Tag Archives: New Line Cinema

Critters: Bounty Hunter – Short Film Revives Classic ’80s Monsters

Hollywood does not seem ready to discard its obsession with remakes and re-imaginings quite yet. For every original concept or literary adaptation you can be sure, hot on its tail, is a modified version of someone’s cherished cinematic memory. When it comes to remakes it seems that the ’80s horror movie genre always takes a huge hit. The Hitcher, Stepfather, Day of the Dead and The Fog are just a handful of ’80s classics (well maybe classic is a bit strong) which have gotten a new coat of paint that they never really needed. If we are lucky these films will entertain, but more often they become another in a long line of soulless cash grabs.

People love nostalgia so the reasons behind these remakes are quite clear, people will pay to see them. But people will also pay to see these franchises resurrected in a slightly different way. Direct sequels can be hit and miss, but at least we recognize the characters and mythos involved. The other way to go is to structure the feature around a different format instead. Hannibal and Bates Motel (though originally novel adaptations) are two examples of films turned into TV shows. Warner Brothers seems to be going this route, with its digital production division Blue Ribbon announcing that one of the many projects it has under development is a new series based on those extraterrestrial flying fur balls, Critters.

critters return in fan film poster

Critters was a New Line Cinema franchise which started in 1986 and has four films in its cannon. It involved some rather nasty little alien creatures called Krites, who whizzed around the room like Sonic the Hedgehog and had a tendency to shoot their quills, as well as their teeth, into people. As well as having a slightly disturbing element to them, the Critters movies are most fondly remembered for the sense of humor that accompanied all the mayhem.

Now relatively little is known so far about Warner Bros Digital return of the Krites, but the news did spark off a reaction with the fans, like Jordan Downey (Thankskilling). Downey decided that he wanted in on this new Critters return and he left quite an inventive calling card to grab people’s attention A short movie called Critters: Bounty Hunter, which is a simple tale of hunter vs Krite, that you can watch below. This shows that you can continue a franchise successfully without reformatting it…

As you can see the short retains the spirit of the first two Critters movies with keeping the action contained in one small, recognizable location. The action is fast paced and quite tense in places, but the trademark dark humor remains (nothing better than hearing an alien swearing in his native tongue!). The attention to detail is superb, with the bounty hunter design looking very much like it did when it was first seen way back in 1986, and the Krite itself looking just as menacing as ever. Below is an extract from Jordan’s YouTube channel telling us a little about the production of the short.

Critters: Bounty Hunter was completed from start to finish in under two months with a small budget and an even smaller crew. All in, a total of six people worked on the movie: Myself, Kevin Stewart, Ricky Fosheim, Nick Soole, Troy Smith and Gina Luciani. We shot for two nights at a house in Mammoth Lakes, California. The Critter puppet was built by Troy Smith who worked with us on both ThanksKilling movies. Our crew handled everything from building the bounty hunter costume, learning the VFX required to pull off the glowing head, scoring, title cards, sound design, etc. We’re proud of what we pulled off with limited resources and can’t wait to share this with everyone. Turn up the volume and hit HD – We hope you enjoy our fun little take on Critters!

Sacha Feiner did a similar thing a few years ago with his great short movie – taking the cue from the reality break in Gremlins 2 – creating movie segments with Gremlins interference.

Sacha’s work was done as a fan project much like Jordan’s project. Now whether this plan works for Jordan and his crew with regards to getting him a job is anyone’s guess, but one thing is for sure. He has certainly gotten the respect of Critters fans worldwide, and even if nothing comes of it, we will always have this short.


Images: Jordan Downey, New Line Cinema, Warner Bros.

How New Line Cinema Destroyed the Friday the 13th Franchise

If you’re a fan of the Friday the 13th franchise, you should definitely check out this new doc by Paul Zamerelli entitled How New Line Cinema Destroyed the Friday the 13th Franchise.

Continue reading How New Line Cinema Destroyed the Friday the 13th Franchise

Y: The Last Man Movie Is Back From The Dead!

They’ve been trying to make a Y: The Last Man movie for a while now. I remember hearing movie plans back when the comic was still being published, and wondered myself who would be playing who, and of course, asked the ultimate question of movie vs TV series. The story starts out fairly simple; All males on Earth die, except Yorick Brown, and one male Capuchin Monkey. The new world, entirely run by women, starts to slowly realize that the human race will die out unless something is done, and Yorick, being the only man around, runs into some trouble just by having that lucky ol’ Y chromosome. That’s putting it lightly, anyway. The direction of how to handle such a beloved, intricate story, and how to bring it to the screen, small or big, is one that seems to have eluded major studios for a while now, despite the project coming very nearly close to being made in 2007.

via [Geek]

Back in 2007, Vaughn and screenwriter Carl Ellsworth began work on adapting Y: The Last Man to film. Suburbia director DJ Caruso was brought on to helm the project in 2010; however, he eventually left due to a disagreement with the studio on how to handle it (he wanted a trilogy; they wanted one film). We’ve not heard much on the project since his departure.

We all know by now that didn’t end up happening, and for good reason. That argument over just how much, and how long the adaptation should be, ended up being pretty crucial.

via [screenrant]

The premise itself is easy to see as a feature film, but the sheer scope of the comic’s run has been a divisive issue.

Known for his expansive and self-contained storylines, Vaughan’s account of Yorick’s travels spanned 60 issues – a story that Caruso remained unconvinced would be best told in a single feature film, which was New Line’s wish. During Caruso’s time on the project four different screenplays were drafted, but ultimately the lack of agreement led to the director and studio parting ways.

Rather than remaining bitter, Caruso moved on to other projects, and explained that his disagreements with New Line went much farther than simple script issues. Unsurprisingly, Caruso wasn’t even sure that Y: The Last Man could be properly adapted into a two-hour film:

I didn’t think that you could take Yorick’s story and put it in to a two-hour movie and do it justice. That was sort of the difference. I think that New Line, working with Warner Bros. in their new relationship, just felt reluctant thinking that we can’t leave this thing open. If you are familiar with the comic book, you know it’s just mind-boggling. If you look at what my buddy Frank Darabont did with ‘The Walking Dead,’ you think […] “is that the best thing for it? Because there is just so much great stuff, so no, I’m not involved with that anymore.”

Here’s where the normal person would suggest it should be a tv miniseries. In a perfect world, of course it should. In a perfect world, I’d love it to be a full fledged show, with each issue adapted into an episode. But in this world, where brilliant comics like The Walking Dead are taken and turned into melodramatic shitfests like its AMC counterpart, I’d rather Y stay off my teevee, and let someone competent, with a single vision, give us his adaptation of the story. That way, if it’s shitty, it’s only 2 hours of my life wasted.

I’m not a fan of Shia LaBeouf, but I’m not a hater either. I have no strong feelings about him one way or the other, but I do think he was miscast as Yorick, and I’m glad that he won’t be playing him.  When I think about that old project, LaBeouf, and factor in that disagreement over length, I can see why the project fell apart. The good news is, it’s been picked back up, and the new script is rumored to actually be good. It’s being written by former Jericho writers Matthew Federman and Stephen Scaia, who you may recognize as the writers for Syfy Channel’s current series Warehouse 13.  This bodes well, because it shows they know how to handle science fiction concepts, as well as an apocalyptic atmosphere, as any fan of Jericho will tell you.

So it seems like the script is good, which is good to hear. As much as I loved Y, not every single little subplot and side character is needed. I can see the entire story being trimmed to just Yorick, Ampersand, Yorick’s girlfriend, 355, Dr. Allison Mann, (Jesus I just got that pun of a last name, what’s wrong with me?), and have Alter as the villain of the film. You could tighten the whole story up, and make it a very simple, 2-3 hour, “Man on the Road” story. You just gotta narrow the vision down to one solid concept, and to me, that concept is the development of the unique relationship between 355 and Yorick. Make that part work, and all the rest will fall into place.

The one deciding factor would also be the ending, which I’m not adverse at all to being changed. Actually, let me clarify, not the ending ending, (because that was beautiful and perfect), just the explanation for what killed all the males. As it was, it took me to about the absolute far end of my suspension of disbelief and tolerance for pseudo-scientific, quasi-new age, bullshit theory. I won’t ruin it for you, but I will warn you that it’s disappointing. Then again, how could it not be? It was certainly unique, and better than “Ohhh crrraaazy virus!”, or what have you. However, when it comes to a film adaptation, a simpler, more easy to digest theory, and ending revelation, such as virus, or a combination of virus and the book’s ending, would suffice.

All in all, this is a script I’d love to get my hands on, and a project I’d love to see actually come to fruition, if only to see how it’s handled. I don’t expect it to be perfect, I just want it to be good on its own terms. Basically what I’m saying is folks, go in expecting a kick in the balls, and if the movie slaps you in the face, you’ve won!

Also, If I had to cast Yorick now? Ryan Reynolds. That’s right. I can feel your hate. IT MAKES ME STRONGER.

‘The Hobbit’ Confirmed As Trilogy. Also, Every Story Now Legally Required To Be Adapted Into Three Films.



A couple of years ago, some of you may remember that in a startlingly logical move, a studio decided to adapt and release The Lord Of The Rings as a trilogy of films, each as its own movie telling the story originally told in three parts in the novel. After those movies went on to make millions and millions of dollars at the box office, studios were looking to fast track the obvious follow-up to LOTR, which was Tolkien’s The Hobbit. The main difference between the two, being that The Hobbit was a significantly shorter, simpler, and far less densely written story, that was originally written as a children’s book.   And then it got shelved, re-planned, re-thought out, and finally years later picked back up again by Peter Jackson, who now, along with the money-grubbing studios that want another million dollar trilogy, is adapting The Hobbit into a movie of its own. Three of them, to be exact, as stated on Peter Jackson’s Facebook. Via [Chicago Tribune]

“We know how much of the story of Bilbo Baggins, the Wizard Gandalf, the Dwarves of Erebor, the rise of the Necromancer, and the Battle of Dol Guldur will remain untold if we do not take this chance,” Jackson wrote.

“So, without further ado and on behalf of New Line Cinema, Warner Bros. Pictures, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Wingnut Films, and the entire cast and crew of ‘The Hobbit’ films, I’d like to announce that two films will become three.”

Now while I’m not directly against an adaptation of The Hobbit itself, because it’s an amazing story, It is decidedly NOT enough story to adapt into 2 movies, and streeeettching it into 3 is downright frivolous.  It’s a pretty straightforward story. Hobbit joins up with dwarves for adventure. They fight trolls and spiders. They try to steal a dragons treasure. Dragon gets mad. They war against the dragon. War ends. The END. It’s enough story to make  a really badass 3 hour movie, with each act reflecting each part of the book. But since making money is paramount over making concise, unbloated, well paced adaptations, we’re going to get 2 unnecessary sequels so as much money as possible can be dragged out of our wallets as we’re forced to pay $16 dollars three times over the course of three years (at least!) , to see it in special LieMax 48fps 3D Digitial Surround sound with bonus cups and collectible glasses! Don’t forget the final showing of the third movie in 2014! Where you can buy a $50 dollar ticket to see all three in one sitting for 12 straight hours, and afterward you can go home and hang yourself because you’ve finally seen Peter Jackson’s ONE TRUE VISION brought to the silver screen.

So yeah. Not a fan of this being split up I guess, is what I’m saying.

New ‘Mortal Kombat’ Movie Is Coming

Earlier in the year I reported on Mortal Kombat: Legacy and the Launch of the 9th Mortal Kombat game. I thought that was a pretty big deal back then but now it looks like it was just the beginning for the rebirth of the franchise.

In September of this year it was reported that New Line Cinema hired Kevin Tancharoen (Mortal Kombat: Legacy) to direct a new feature length movie based on the franchise. No actors have been confirmed as of yet. I just hope they decide to keep Jeri Ryan as Sonya.

At Comic Con 2011 Tancharoen, along with writer Oren Uziel, and the creator of the franchise Ed Boon stated that we can “expect a very big origin story with the sensibility and realism of Rebirth and Legacy as opposed to the traditional Mortal Kombat mythology.” from the new film.

"Ha ha ha...I don't think so."

Shooting is expected to start in March of 2012 with a release date of 2013.

Check out the reviews of ‘Mortal Kombat: Legacy’ by Supascoot HERE