Oct. 22, 2014 | 7:00 a.m.
When “American Horror Story” creator Ryan Murphy first contacted actor John Carroll Lynch about a possible role on the fourth season of his gleefully deranged hit, he was upfront about his aims for a new character, a silent, grinning killer straight out of a child’s nightmare. “He described it in a way that I understood it to be somebody calling me up and going, ‘We’d like you to play my version of the Phantom of the Opera,’ ” Lynch recalled recently. “He said he wanted to create the most terrifying clown in the history of television.” By all accounts, he succeeded. Lynch’s Twisty the Clown has become the chief talking point of “American Horror Story: Freak Show,” quite an achievement considering Murphy stocked the latest season of his Emmy-winning anthology series with conjoined twins, a bearded Kathy Bates and a […]
Oct. 12, 2014 | 8:00 a.m.
“The Walking Dead” kicks off its fifth season Sunday with Rick (Andrew Lincoln), Daryl (Norman Reedus) and the other survivors facing off against hungry cannibals. No one said life during the zombie apocalypse would be easy. Although the road the group has traveled has been unspeakably difficult, their hardships have helped catapult the hit AMC drama to the center of popular culture — “The Walking Dead” continues to rank as television’s most watched prime-time scripted drama, averaging more than 13 million viewers last year. (The season 4 finale was seen by 15.7 million people.) It’s little wonder that AMC has ordered a pilot for a “Walking Dead” spinoff, which is set to go into production this year, and already has confirmed that the series, overseen by show runner Scott M. Gimple, will return for a sixth season. Click through the […]
Oct. 02, 2014 | 5:36 p.m.
Watch the new film “Annabelle,” which arrives in theaters Friday as the first horror movie of October, and you might experience a slight sense of déjà vu. A prequel to last year’s breakout hit “The Conjuring,” “Annabelle” owes a creative debt to Roman Polanski’s classic “Rosemary’s Baby,” which sees expectant mother Rosemary Woodhouse (Mia Farrow) increasingly come to believe that evil forces are pursuing her unborn child. “Annabelle” director John R. Leonetti said he took a great deal of inspiration both for the look of his movie, which is set entirely in Southern California in the 1960s, from the 1968 thriller, which earned supporting actress Ruth Gordon an Oscar for her performance as the Satanist-next-door Minnie Castevet. But thematically, the movies link up too. While “Annabelle” purports to explain the origins of the evil doll introduced in “The Conjuring,” both […]
Sept. 25, 2014 | 2:21 p.m.
There are few things that will bond a cast of actors more closely than two consecutive weeks of filming at night in close confines during a polar vortex event in Toronto, according to actor Kevin Durand, who plays the towering exterminator Vasiliy Fet in “The Strain,” FX’s hit series adapted from the novels by Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan. But the experience of shooting the eighth episode, “Creatures of the Night” — which sees the show’s ensemble of heroes fending off hordes of attacking vampires from inside a Brooklyn convenience store — didn’t just help him forge lasting connections among the actors, Durand said. It also allowed him to channel his inner action hero. “I love getting physical with characters,” Duran said in an interview earlier this year on the Toronto set of the show. “With this guy, there’s […]
Aug. 28, 2014 | 6:49 p.m.
Set in the catacombs beneath Paris, Legendary’s new horror film “As Above, So Below” sees a group of adventures, led by enterprising scholar Scarlett Marlowe (Perdita Weeks), set out to reclaim the mythic philosopher’s stone, a powerful alchemical artifact said to possess the ability to turn base metals into gold. But the expedition takes a surprising, and sinister, turn when Marlowe and her companions seemingly encounter horrors from their pasts, and possibly enter the gates of Hell. The film is the latest project from the producing-directing team of Drew and John Dowdle, who most recently fashioned 2010’s “Devil,” a supernatural thriller about five strangers trapped in an elevator and the evil lurking among them. But the pair has a history with horror — John, a New York University film school graduate, and Drew, a former mergers and acquisitions specialist on […]
Aug. 25, 2014 | 11:55 a.m.
Glen Mazzara is resurrecting the Antichrist for Lifetime. The former showrunner of AMC’s “The Walking Dead” is masterminding a new series, “Damien,” which will draw inspiration from director Richard Donner’s 1976 horror classic “The Omen.” The new six-episode series will chronicle the adult life of Damien Thorn, a character introduced to moviegoers in Donner’s film as a young boy adopted by a politically powerful couple — played by Gregory Peck and Lee Remick. After Damien’s presence appears to set off a series of unexplainable events, the couple slowly begin to suspect that there is something deeply sinister about their child. In Mazzara’s show, Damien has been raised without knowledge about his true identity, and he must grapple with his destiny as a catalyst for the apocalypse. Mazzara will write and executive produce “Damien,” which is set to debut on Lifetime […]
Aug. 19, 2014 | 12:42 p.m.
The apocalyptic horror series “The Strain” will return for a second season, FX announced Tuesday. Based on a trilogy of novels by Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan, the show is the latest high-concept thriller to explore the end of modern civilization — here, the threat arrives on board a flight into JFK when an old-world monster steals away on the plane and infects the passengers with a virus that transforms them into blood-thirsty monsters. Corey Stoll’s CDC epidemiologist Eph Goodweather finds himself drawn into the unfolding chaos, and before long, he is forced to partner with an eccentric pawn shop owner, Abraham Setrakian (played by David Bradley), to face down the creatures. PHOTOS: Hollywood Backlot on the set of ‘The Strain’ “The thing I wanted to do in ‘The Strain,’ you can actually see this world collapse in a […]
Aug. 17, 2014 | 6:00 a.m.
It’s in the vein of old-style vampire hunters that David Bradley operates on “The Strain,” FX’s hit series that sees the world on the precipice of apocalypse thanks to the bloodthirsty undead. But the English actor, well known to genre audiences from his work in the “Harry Potter” movie franchise and on the wildly popular “Game of Thrones,” says he doesn’t directly draw inspiration from any famous forerunners in the unusual science. “I didn’t try to look for references or comparisons with other characters, otherwise there’s always a danger of playing that rather than what Guillermo and Chuck have got written down,” Bradley said in an interview on the Toronto set of the show, when asked about any similarities between his determined Abraham Setrakian and Bram Stoker’s Abraham Van Helsing, the man who famously tracked Dracula and brought the powerful […]
Aug. 12, 2014 | 4:59 p.m.
Filmmaker Guillermo del Toro and “Metal Gear Solid” creator Hideo Kojima will join forces for a return trip to Silent Hill. Word about the new installment in the long-running video game series arrived Tuesday via an interactive teaser released on the PlayStation store. Near the conclusion of an hour-plus long demo for a game referred to as “P.T.,” title cards appeared on screen featuring both Del Toro’s name and Kojima’s (another suggested the game could be titled “Silent Hills”). Also glimpsed was a character modeled on “The Walking Dead” star Norman Reedus, who could be seen standing on a desolate city street at night. Although some years away from its creative zenith, the “Silent Hill” franchise won a legion of fans for its atmospheric thrills and surreal imagery. It spawned two films — 2006’s “Silent Hill,”and more recently, 2012’s “Silent […]
Aug. 07, 2014 | 6:46 a.m.
Actress Marilyn Burns died Tuesday in her Houston-area home at age 65. Texas figured large in her career — Burns was perhaps best known for starring in “The Texas Chain Saw Massacre,” Tobe Hooper’s dark nightmare of murder and cannibalism in the South that has become, in the years since its original release, a landmark in the horror genre and in the world of independent filmmaking. Bill Moseley was one of the many viewers deeply affected by the film — his relationship to it helped shape his acting career. Below, the man who starred in “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2″ as Chop-top offers an appreciation of Burns. My first glimpse of Marilyn Burns was on the screen of the old Paramount Theater in Boston’s Combat Zone in 1975, in Tobe Hooper’s horror classic, “The Texas Chain Saw Massacre.” Marilyn was […]