Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter

Aug. 09, 2012 | 3:12 p.m.

Seth Grahame-Smith wants to resurrect ‘Beetlejuice,’ ‘It’

Two months ago, Seth Grahame-Smith looked like he would be the breakout star of a crowded summer movie season. The “Pride and Prejudice and Zombies” novelist-turned-Hollywood screenwriter had two films set for release within weeks of each other: Tim Burton’s soap opera send-up “Dark Shadows” and an adaptation of his own bestseller, “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter.” The first starred Johnny Depp as an aristocratic vampire who must navigate the strange social mores of 1970s Maine; the latter cast newcomer Benjamin Walker as an ax-wielding incarnation of the 16th president who, out to avenge his mother’s murder, hunts down the monsters secretly advancing the practice of slavery. Both flopped. Suddenly, the 36-year-old — whom the Wall Street Journal had proclaimed “one of Hollywood’s most sought-after young players” — didn’t seem quite so whiz-bang successful. “I’ve thought a lot about this summer […]
June 25, 2012 | 5:00 a.m.

‘Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter’ delivers ‘violent ballet’

Benjamin Walker was halfway through the production of his first feature as a leading man, but standing on the Louisiana set of “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter” last year, the star of the monster mash-up movie wasn’t ready to make any assumptions about his career’s future prospects. “Who knows?” the Georgia native said between takes of the Timur Bekmambetov-directed action thriller. “I’ll probably go back to waiting tables and begging the government for health insurance here shortly, but for now I’m in high cotton.” Walker’s pragmatism surely will serve him well, though it’s unlikely he’ll be waiting tables anytime soon. Critics haven’t been especially kind to “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter” — reviews for the unusual slice of R-rated revisionist history have been largely tepid at best — and the film grossed only an estimated $16.5 million in its opening weekend. Yet the […]
April 16, 2012 | 12:30 p.m.

‘Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter’: Fake history, but an honest Abe

The sun was just about to set over Lake Pontchartrain on a humid Louisiana day last May when Abraham Lincoln was summoned into action in a grassy field to wrestle to the hard, unforgiving ground the murderous nemesis who took the life of his mother years earlier. Lincoln bellowed with sorrow and rage, pinning an enemy beneath his considerable weight. This was not the weathered president struggling to bear up under the agonizing grief of a bloody and brutal Civil War. This was a young man primed for a fight to the death. Funny thing, though — no one in the assembled crowd of onlookers seemed to bat an eye that Honest Abe was facing off against a vampire. Such is the straight-faced approach to the somewhat ridiculous-sounding “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter,” Fox’s 3-D adaptation of Seth Grahame-Smith’s novel due […]
Feb. 18, 2012 | 4:35 a.m.

Abraham Lincoln, America’s first superhero?

This Presidents Day, almost 150 years after his assassination, Abraham Lincoln is poised to become the breakout star of 2012. In June, he will fight the undead in a movie adaptation of Seth Grahame-Smith’s bestselling novel, “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter.” Later this year, Steven Spielberg will offer a more historically accurate – if disappointingly vampire-free – biography of Lincoln starring Daniel Day-Lewis. And (ahem) in my own upcoming novel, “Red, White, and Blood,” Lincoln gives advice from beyond the grave in order to save the current president’s life. But these are, honestly, just the latest additions on Lincoln’s post-mortal resume. Long before Paul Bunyan swung his axe or Superman battled Lex Luthor, Lincoln was America’s first superhuman. He’s partied with Keanu Reeves in “Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure” and fought alongside Captain James T. Kirk of the U.S.S. Enterprise. He […]
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