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I’d be lying if I said my most anticipated film of 2011 wasn’t DRIVE ANGRY (pictured). Nic Cage partnered with the team of scripter Todd Farmer and director Patrick Lussier (who did quite a fun job on their first outing together, MY BLOODY VALENTINE) on a supernatural car-chase tale promising a high level of insanity? It sounds like the perfect way to spend two hours in a theater. While speaking exclusively to Fango about the upcoming flick, Farmer touched on a couple of other projects he and Lussier have been involved in, HELLRAISER and HALLOWEEN 3D, and offered his two cents on the current remake craze in general. Hit the jump to check out what he had to say!
“The fact that DRIVE ANGRY got made is an absolute miracle,” he tells Fango, reflecting on the state of Hollywood. “The thin thread that held it together is unheard of. We went to producers first with the script, and people mostly raved about it, but nobody was interested in making it. We’re at a time when it’s easier to remake an obscure movie like VALENTINE, which not many people even saw. It’s easier to make that because it’s got name recognition, and I had to make my peace with that a few years ago because those were the only jobs that were available. Even now with DRIVE ANGRY, I think if you looked, there’s probably not that many specs that got up and made last year, and we’re one of the few.”
Even with DRIVE ANGRY fast approaching, Farmer and Lussier are still entrenched in the remake game, toiling away on the HELLRAISER reimagining—something the scripter is terribly excited about. “What’s interesting is when they first started talking about it, the discussion was, ‘Well, we don’t really want to remake Clive’s film because his movie is there, it will always be there, and it sort of changed all of the rules,’ ” he says. “It was so unique for what it was. I can’t remember seeing anything like it. It’s funny, the only thing I can liken it to is the first time I opened up FANGORIA; I was like, ‘I can’t believe that this is actually being printed, that people can actually look at this.’ HELLRAISER was the same thing, so we don’t want to reinvent that wheel. What we’re doing is sort of modernizing and putting our filthy spin on it.
“Some people are upset that we’re remaking HELLRAISER,” Farmer continues. “This is the thing: I feel like we did a good job with MY BLOODY VALENTINE, I trust me and I trust Patrick. Somebody’s going to remake HELLRAISER, and personally, as a fan, I’d rather it be me, and that’s sort of the way I’m going about it. I know that sounds a little arrogant, but what I don’t want to do—and I don’t want to dis anyone—but there have been remakes I didn’t like, and others where I was really interested to see what happened. Remember, we grew up with remakes. THE FLY and THE THING, those were remakes and they were fantastic. Cronenberg took the original idea and spun it into something completely unique, and Carpenter did that with THE THING.
“That’s what we want to do when we do remakes. With MY BLOODY VALENTINE, they literally made [the original] for 40 bucks and a box of smokes. We put some money behind it and did it in that aspect. The idea is to treat it with respect. Hold to the original to a degree, but take it somewhere different, show the audience something new. Clive’s HELLRAISER will always be out there, and it will always be on my shelf and I’ll pull it off like I always do and watch it. We don’t want to change that; we don’t want to burn the copy that exists. Clive’s brilliant, why would we ever do that? We just want to add to that world.”
The filmmaking partners also attempted to take that approach to the recently remade (and very divisively so) HALLOWEEN universe, which so far hasn’t panned out. “The script for HALLOWEEN 3D…Patrick and I reread it recently and we really love it,” Farmer says. “We took Rob Zombie’s story and continued it, but we did it in a way that sort of pulled it back to the John Carpenter tone and intention, and we didn’t cheat. We didn’t break any of the rules. We used the rules Zombie had established, and it felt good because it felt like a complete story, and we’re still hopeful that one day it’ll happen. But all of the focus is on HELLRAISER, and we couldn’t be more thrilled with what we’ve come up with.”
Look for Fango’s exclusive coverage of DRIVE ANGRY in issue #301, on sale in February.
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