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A Bloody Good Time: The 10 Most Exciting Horror News From Comic-Con

July 27, 2017 | Posted by Joseph Lee
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Opening Logo courtesy of Benjamin J. Colón (Soul Exodus)

San Diego Comic-Con has come and gone, and after surviving another weekend reporting it for 411, I went to look at the various horror related news I might have missed. As it turns out, there was a lot of it. So I decided to grab the ten most exciting horror-related news stories from the weekend and talk about them here. A pretty simple subject, and one that should generate a lot of discussion. Let’s do this!

#10: Freddy Krueger and Christine are in Ready Player One

Well, they make cameos, anyway. I thought getting the least important out of the way first would be good. The trailer for Steven Spielberg’s Ready Player One dropped on Saturday and I was underwhelmed. Of course it’s Spielberg, so I’m sure it’ll be good, I just didn’t get immediately excited. Krueger’s appearance was not a big deal, he just get obliterated in a single shot, but it was nice to see horror references in a Spielberg movie along with the likes of the Iron Giant and Duke Nukem.

It does make me wonder how much these references are just little Easter eggs and how much they’ll have a part in the film. This does give me hope that Pennywise will take the form of Freddy in IT, since Warner Bros. seems just fine with loaning him out for anything. Christine’s also got a busy 2017, as she also has a cameo in The Dark Tower. Not bad for a car made in 1958.

#9: A new Jeffrey Dahmer movie

I don’t know if you’re aware of this, but Jeffrey Dahmer was a messed up dude. Shocking, I know. Anyway, this one went under the radar at SDCC because hey, they showed the same Avengers: Infinity War footage as D23 and people lost their minds. My Friend Dahmer will follow him before he became one of the world’s most infamous serial killers as he displays weird behavior in high school.

The film could be good or bad. It’s described as a dark comedy, which seems like it might be making light of the real story. I haven’t read the graphic novel it’s based on. I enjoy true crime shows and films so I’ll give this a shot. Hopefully it’s worth it.

#8: American Horror Story: Cult officially announced

I don’t watch American Horror Story as every time I’ve watched I found it to be stupid. That said, I was really interested when rumors circulated after the Presidential election that this would be related to that. There were many aspects of that election that could be explored. There was a lot of crazy, passionate people on all sides, after all. Sure, it’s possible that it could just be an uncreative shot at our current Administration, but it could use horror to really amp the social commentary in a way the best films have.

Now that it has an official title, we still don’t really know anything about it. It’s still apparently inspired by the Election, but this does nothing to confirm what aspect they’ll explore. I have my ideas, and I’m sure you have yours, but I guess we’ll have to tune in to see what happens. Which I guess is the point of the marketing.

#7: Footage shown for The Nun

The Conjuring and The Conjuring 2 are about as good as Hollywood horror films get these days. Then along came Annabelle, which was a dull, cliched pile of you-know-what. Annabelle 2 looks better, because of the talent behind the camera, but the jury’s still out on The Nun. The titular character was by far the most frightening aspect of The Conjuring 2, but the last time a Conjuring spin-off ws attempted, it didn’t go so well.

At Comic-Con, the first teaser trailer for the film was shown and apparently recieved a warm reaction. The talent both in front of and behind the camera also lends some credibility to it. Corin Hardy directed The Hallow, which was praised by horror reviewers. The cast includes Taissa Farmiga (which is just funny casting, in my opinion) and Drmian Bichir. It has enough to make it a good horror film, whether or not it overcomes its blatant cash-in beginnings is still unknown at this point.

#6: Scream Factory makes huge release announcements

Every year at Comic-Con, Scream Factory uses the Shout Factory panel to annouce a slew of releases, usually some of their bigger ones. This year was no exception, as they announced new editions of films like Misery, Silent Night, Deadly Nght and the sequels to Darkman! The sequels were part of a trilogy release but this will be the first time they get their own standalone sets, presumbly with special features. We could own all of the Darkman films in collector’s edition blu-rays by this time net year. What a time to be alive. Let’s hope they find that TV pilot and throw it on there too.

The other releases include newer films like Drag Me to Hell and The Strangers to more obscure titles like Cyborg, Eye of the Cat, Attack of the Puppet People and American Gothic. Scream always goes the extra mile for their fans, which is why they’re still my favorite home video company.

#5: Season 8 trailer for The Walking Dead

This ranks kind of low because overall, I was underwhelmed by the trailer but I’m still interested to see where the season goes. The bit with Negan and Gabriel at the opening was great, but the rest was just meant to be a tease and that’s all it was. We’re getting the ‘All-Out War’ this season, so expect a lot of death and carnage. I am not that far along in the comics, so I don’t know who dies, but I guess we lose a long-time favorite again. My guess is Carol.

A lot of people are also talking about the bit at the end, with Rick waking up with a full beard. Someone I know suggested he loses his leg like Herschel. Others are calling it a flash-forward to some unrevealed future. I think it’s a dream sequence, playing with the fan theory that all of this show has been in Rick’s head during his coma. I guess we’ll find out in October.

#4: IT footage shown at SDCC, Muschietti returning to direct Part 2

We got a lot of IT news at Comic-Con, which makes sense because Warner Bros. is expecting it to make big bank this September. As they should, because they have a second part in the works. I think it will be a huge hit, as it has little competition and people are excited to see another adaptation of the book. Tim Curry was iconic, but it’s high time we got as close of a proper adaptation as we can get. Speaking of Part 2, it was revealed that Andy Muschietti will be back to direct that. So if he does a great job with this movie, then I’ll be excited to have him return.

Another big deal was that footage from the film was shown, and it was dark. It showed a scene of Mike being terrorized by Henry Bowers only to catch a glimpse of Pennywise waving to him….with a child’s severed arm. I’m guessing it’s Georgie’s. At least it shows that IT will definitely be going there with its violence in order to tell the story. It’s about an otherworldly monster that takes the form of a clown and eats children…there’s not a good way to tone down that story.

#3: The trailer for Jigsaw

I’ve made it no secret that I’m a big fan of the Saw series and will continue to see the movies in theaters as long as they keep making them. If it’s not your thing, don’t go see it. It’s that simple. I was happy with the news of a new film and after the trailer, I’m ready for October 27 to get here. The fact that it’s a copycat and not Jigsaw or one of his disciples allows them to start fresh while keeping it within the same universe. It’s that attention to continuity that makes the series great.

And the trailer was pretty great, too. There looks to be a lot of nasty, new traps and Tobin Bell will be back in some form, even if it’s just his voice. Before you dismiss this off hand because of the series it’s in, keep in mind that the directors (Peter and Michael Spierig) were responsible for the cult favorite Undead and the fantastic vampire movie Daybreakers. Jigsaw will be great, and could be one of the best in the series. I think it will surprise people.

#2: Todd McFarlane to write/direct new Spawn for Blumhouse

It’s about time. I was just saying during my recap of the animated series that it’s bizarre that no one has tried to make a new Spawn film yet. Now Todd McFarlane revealed that he’s not only writing the new film, but he’s directing it. Blumhouse, who seems to distribute everything horror these days, will produce. It would be one thing if McFarlane was just saying it’s happening, because he’s been doing that for years, but Blumhouse’s involvement makes this thing legit.

The 1997 movie wasn’t very good, but it was so close. It had some good effects (the suit and the animatronics) but the CGI was way off and the scenes in Hell were laughable. Hopefully a new film can learn from the old’s mistakes in the way that Dredd vastly improved upon Judge Dredd. Who knows if we’ll actually see this movie, but this news makes me believe we’re closer than we ever have been.

#1: Stranger Things season two trailer!

As I revealed a couple of weeks ago, I’m like the rest of you sheep and am all in on Stranger Things. So the arrival of the trailer on Saturday got me very excited, more so when I heard the voice of Vincent Price and the tones of “Thriller.” That might be the best use of that song since the original video. Watching the trailer allowed me to slip back into that familiar world, and it was like we never left. It’s going to be great streaming the two seasons back to back.

How about what it actually showed? There was some more of the Upside Down, more of what’s wrong with Will and, thankfully, a tease that showed us Eleven was alive and well. It was probably safe to assume she was, but for the first half of that trailer I was wondering where she was and happy to see her return. I need more badass psychics on my TV screen. Between this, Jigsaw and Cult of Chucky, my October is booked solid, you guys.

Ending Notes:

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