I love DVD collections of old movie trailers. Since 2005, Synapse Films has been releasing volumes of classic grindhouse and drive-in exploitation trailers on DVD under the 42nd Street Forever and early this year unleashed their first Blu-ray edition in the series. One of those discs can provide an entire evening’s entertainment for the true connoisseur of cinema. Independent home video distributors understand the slim but still lucrative market value of a movie trailer collection. If you ask a bunch of people what their favorite part of the Quentin Tarantino/Robert Rodriguez B-movie double feature homage Grindhouse was, chances are most of them will say they loved the spoof trailers directed by Eli Roth, Rob Zombie, Edgar Wright, and Rodriguez. Movie geek meccas like the Alamo Drafthouse and the New Beverly Cinema often program vintage trailers to go along with that night’s film selection. People still make their old trailer compilations for fun. Roth even talked about making a feature film in the form of a reel of trailers.
Trailers from Hell is a highly-addictive website where film directors, writers, and producers provide introductions and commentaries for the trailers to some of their favorite films. From beloved classics to obscure cult flicks, from Oscar-winning epics to kinetic blasts of pure psychotronic insanity, there is no vintage preview that the TFH crew will not unearth and gab about to the delight of movie geeks everywhere. They’ve even started releasing DVD collections of the finest trailers and commentaries on their site that they could secure the rights to through the amazing Shout! Factory, a true friend to film fans with expansive DVD and Blu-ray libraries (and this is the part where yours truly sheepishly raises his hand). So with that in mind I bring you Trailers from Hell! Volume Two.
A movie adaptation of the massively popular Microsoft video game franchise, Halo, has been talked about for a good five or so years now. At one point it was rolling forward steadily with Neil Blomkamp (before anyone had a clue who he was) attached to direct and Peter Jackson set to produce. At the time, things weren’t quite what they are now and a rising budget forced backers Universal and Fox to pull out and everything to fall apart around the project.
Little did they know at the time, that soon it would be much easier to do big budget effects with less cost. And in a cruel twist of ironic fate, it was Jackson and Blomkamp who left Halo and went on to make a little movie called District 9 on a minor $30 million budget, which received critical praise, over $210 million at the box office, and even a Best Picture nomination at the Academy Awards. Knowing this knowledge, we probably would already have at least one Halo movie, and judging by how popular the games are, more would be on the way.
When it comes to classic titles, people have a zero-tolerance to remakes and reinventions and anything that may taint the integrity of the original.
When it comes to The Wizard of Oz, however, there seems to be a special type of open-mindedness to prospective future titles. Part of this is because the beloved 1939 Judy Garland film was not the first to be adapted from Frank L. Baum‘s timeless story — not even close — and because it’s such a perfectly fantastical playground, eternally ripe for creative minds to reinterpret and re-visualize according to the cinematic times.
There’s a handful of possible Wizard of Oz films currently in various states of development — most of which will likely never see the light of day — and it’s only a matter of time before a couple of them get that big green light to go into production.
It appears that the creepy world of The Wizard of Oz that everyone wanted to see from Spawn creator Todd McFarlane may not be coming our way any time soon. A scoop from Pajiba points to Warner Brothers passing by McFarlane and moving forward with a take that was once thought to be disliked by those involved.
Back in October was the last time that we heard from McFarlane about the progress of his film, and things seemed to be moving forward (Read: Todd McFarlane Talks The Status Of His Twisted “˜Wizard Of Oz’; Shares Story Details). He claimed that he was developing the film with A History of Violence scribe Josh Olson, whose first script was too light and “too Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory” for his darker vision, and that rewrites were happening. The interesting thing about that situation, is that it sounded like McFarlane had sold Warner Brothers on his idea, and that he was perfectly okay with the fact that he would have to sacrifice some of his extreme ideas, saying “I just found it odd that they bought that cool, creepy pitch and now they’re taking a step back.” This quote is now even more interesting with the revelation that Warner Brothers is now leaning MORE toward Olson’s script, and running away from the darker idea all together.
Click on over to read a brief description of the Oz that we just might be seeing in the near future.