The master of all things genre, writer/composer/director John Carpenter has signed an overall deal with Universal Cable Productions that will see him create, develop and executive produce projects with UCP for NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment as well as other networks and streaming services.
UCP and Carpenter are already in development on “Tales for a Halloween Night” for SYFY. Based on Carpenter’s award-winning graphic novel anthology of stories where he brings together storytellers from the worlds of movies, novels, and comics for a collection of horror stories featuring graveyards, sunken ships, creepy crawlers and ghosts that will haunt your dreams long after you’ve finished reading.
This is to officially announce that yes, BOOM! Studios will be publishing ESCAPE FROM NEW YORK comics, starting in December! High Crimes and DEAD LETTERS writer Christopher Sebela will be writing, and an artist will be named later. Escape from New York is a cult classic sci-fi film from 1981 co-written and directed by John Carpenter. In the then-near future of 1997, Manhattan has been converted to a maximum security prison. When Air Force One crash lands there, ex-soldier Snake Plissken (played by Kurt Russell in the film) is given 22 hours to rescue the President of the United States and the sensitive information he’s carrying.
One of the greatest oddball action movies of all time is getting a four-color take: John Carpenter and Eric Powell have created an on-going Big Trouble In Little China series for BOOM! Studios. The boisterous Jack Burton will tackle new adventures beginning in June.
The whole point of the movie was to create a John Wayne-like would-be hero who would actually be the sidekick to his Asian buddy. How will the macho-but-inept Burton survive on his own? I will looking forward to see how Powell (The Goon) and Brian Churilla(The Sixth Gun: Sons of the Gun) work this premise – especially since the all-new adventures of Jack Burton begin with a stowaway on his big rig, the Pork Chop Express. Check out alternate covers, series description and ordering information after the jump.
One of John Carpenter’s most popular films – They Live – is getting the special Shout!Factory treatment. They Live: Collector’s Edition will contain a bundle of features (the same features, in fact, on both the DVD and Blu-ray!) including an audio commentary track with Carpenter and the film’s star, Roddy Piper. Whether you consider it a sci-fi/action flick with scathing satire, or a scathing sci-fi satire with action, They Live is one of Carpenter’s best and most thought provoking.
They Live: Collector’s Edition will be released on November 6, 2012. For the official press release – including a full list of the special features – follow the jump.
One of the all-time great westerns – Sergio Leone’s Once Upon A Time In The West – is coming to Blu-ray on May 31, 2001. Starring Claudia Cardinale, Henry Fonda, Jason Robards and Charles Bronson, Leone’s epic ranks among the best films of the genre. The Paramount Blu-ray release includes both the theatrical release and a completely restored version of the film, plus an audio commentary and several other features. Details follow the jump.
It’s been thirty years since a little horror movie changed the genre forever and gave John Carpenter a career. Halloween was something completely different – a story about a killer child who grew up to become the personification of evil, Michael Myers. To celebrate this anniversary, Anchor Bay Entertainment has packaged the three best films in the series along with a documentary on the Halloween phenomenon in a gorgeous display package featuring what they describe as “an exclusive display replica of the Michael Myers mask, which has become THE face of horror for the last three decades [sorry, head not included]! The six-disc set contains three versions of Halloween, Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers and Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers.
Horror movies are notorious for many reasons other than the fact that people seem to enjoy a good scare now and then. For many first-time directors [see: Sam Raimi, John Carpenter], horror is attractive because fans are willing to buy into low-budget movies if they’re suitably original and/or smart, and/or fun. In the case of Jack Brooks: Monster Slayer, two of the three apply.
Somewhere between Raimi and Joss Whedon, Jack Brooks: Monster Slayer is a movie that has genuine with and more than a little gore – both components being sought after by horror aficionados. The film is a kind of origin story, telling of how Jack’s family was killed by a forest troll – leaving him prone to bouts of explosive anger.
Jack [Trevor Matthews] is a plumber who’s competent but not brilliant at his job and is taking a night course in chemistry to please his annoyingly strident girlfriend, Eve [Birds of Prey star Rachel Skarsten]. The problems begin when the class’ teacher, Professor Gordon Crowley [Robert Englund] asks him to fix the plumbing in his creepy old house at the top of an ominous hill. A weird smoke drifts into the home and possesses Crowley and before long, he’s ingested a demon’s heart – and not by choice!
One of the things that make Jack Brooks fun is the way it plays against convention. For example, in most genre movies, the audience wants the hero to get together with the girl. Here, we want him to bounce the squeaky shrew into the next town! Another is the kind of broad comedy we get from Englund’s Crowley. He doesn’t usually get to do this kind of shtick and he does it very well.
Most of the effects are practical – with the exception of enhancing the weird smoke that gets Crowley, the computer was used only to paint out wires and stunt mats. The result is some extremely fun “mutants;” one of the best Cyclops since Harryhausen [only here, it’s a man in a rubber suit], and some hentai-like tentacles. Of course, there’s also a big rubber demon that is more funny than scary [since it’s pretty much immobile], but the mix definitely gives Jack Brooks the kind of horror/comedy play that has elevated Raimi and Whedon to stardom.
Director and co-writer Jon Knautz keeps the pacing up and isn’t afraid to go for delicious moments of pure camp as well some genuine chills. First-time actor [and co-producer] Trevor Matthews seems to be having a lot of fun as the calmness-challenged Jack, who finally finds a way to put his temper to good use, while Skarsten is fine as the shrill, obnoxious Eve. The script is pretty tight, there are some clever uses of characters like the star student, Janice [Stefanie Drummond] but, is it just me, or are there a lot of star students named Janice?
As one might expect from an Anchor Bay DVD, there a lot of features here, too: Audio commentary by Knautz, Matthews, Producer Patrick white and Composer Ryan shore; Behind the Scenes – a fifty-minute making of featurette; Creating the Monsters; Creating the Music; World Premiere: Sitges, Spain; Five Deleted Scenes; Storyboard Comparisons; Conceptual Art Gallery; On Set Still Gallery and the Theatrical Trailer.