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Ask any serious, sophisticated vampire fan about their favorite contemporary fang film, and more often than not, their title of choice will be 2008’s LET THE RIGHT ONE IN. Tomas Alfredson’s chilling, melancholy and austere Swedish coming-of-age bloodbath is as elegant as it is eerie, and managed to bridge the gap between the art house and the exploitation worlds with copious amounts of both beauty and terror. Critical and festival acclaim came in geysers.
So when the inevitable American remake was soon announced, it was a given that LET THE RIGHT ONE IN's devoted cult of admirers threw their hands up in typical fan-fueled disgust. It happens. But in the case of this new version, the talent behind the lens actually cares about the coattails they’re riding upon. The remake (rechristened simply LET ME IN, and opening from Overture Films October 1) is written and directed by CLOVERFIELD helmer Matt Reeves, a film artist who is as concerned with character as he is with carnage. And even more noteworthy, LET ME IN was announced as the first vampire movie from the newly reborn Hammer Films (see sidebar). The pedigree is beyond solid.
FANGORIA spoke to Reeves about his English-language makeover of a modern classic and found him to be honest, intelligent and deeply, hopelessly in love with his source material. The new film tells the same gentle tale of a preteen boy (Kodi Smit-McPhee from THE ROAD) growing up in a harsh, confusing and frightening world, and how he develops a sweet friendship with an equally removed girl (KICK-ASS’ Chloe Moretz)…a child who also just happens to be an ancient, blood-drinking, murderous ghoul. Reeves’ passion for this project is as infectious as the bite of his diminutive antiheroine, which gives us nothing but hope for the film’s outcome…
FANGORIA: LET THE RIGHT ONE IN is such a fragile film, and touched a lot of horror fans. When did it first fall on your radar?
MATT REEVES: It was right after CLOVERFIELD came out and I was talking to Overture about what my next project would be, and they told me they were trying to secure the rights to remake this little Swedish film and that I should have a look at it. They gave me a DVD screener of Let the Right One In, and I was blown away.
For the whole story, pick up FANGORIA #297, on sale this month. Go here for full issue details, and here to subscribe to the magazine!
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