Welcome back to Horror Happenings! We hope you’ve been enjoying Brian Collins’ latest eBook Horror Movie A Day: The Book since we last saw you just one week ago. Today we’re telling you about Robert Eggers‘, writer/director of The Witch for which he won Best Director at Sundance, latest plus the latest scary story to go to pilot on the CW. Let’s get to it!
Writer/ Director of The Witch To Tackle Rasputin Miniseries
Call it a match made in historical hell; Robert Eggers, director of the critically acclaimed Sundance favorite The Witch is now attached to a mini-series about the life of Rasputin, the mystical Russian historical figure. Deadline reports that Eggers will “write and direct six to eight episodes that will cover Rasputin’s origins in Siberia to his rise to power and bloody death in St. Petersburg.” This is in addition to a remake of the German expressionist classic Nosferatu that Eggers is also on-board to write and direct, announced in 2015.
Research was obviously a heavy part of pre-production on The Witch, which Eggers calls a “New England folktale.” It makes perfect sense that a long-form telling of the historical “mad monk” would be on the slate for Eggers and would probably be an excellent fit for the director. I would also argue that Eggers’ acclaim could grow with the chance to oversee all of the episodes of a series, something that, when done right, has bumped directors like True Detective‘s Cary Fukunaga up to the A-list.
The Witch won almost universally positive reviews from critics but was divisive amongst audiences. Still, in its second weekend of release it dropped less than 50% in box office returns, and has continued to generate a strong interest from fans and journalists alike.
Transylvania Pilot For the CW Casts Lead Actress
The CW has had some great television success when it comes to the subject of vampires. Both The Vampire Diaries and its spin-off The Originals have both proven to be hits with their audience and now we can add one more pilot into the mix that has just cast its lead. Australian actress Laura Brent, best known for her role in The Chronicles of Narnia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, will star in the period pilot set in 1880. In search of her father, Brent’s character will travel from the US all the way to Transylvania where she and her male counterpart will, according to Deadline, “witness the births of the most famous monsters and villains in history.”
From the basic premise alone, it sounds a bit like Penny Dreadful-lite to me, but as far as I’m concerned, there certainly isn’t anything wrong with that! Plus, I’m of the mindset that anything that encourages young audiences to embrace a love of gothic horror is fine by me.
It’s also worth mentioning that when it comes to genre on TV, the CW is consistently giving it an honest shot. Just a few seasons ago they tried but ultimately passed on bringing a reboot of Tales From the Darkside to the small screen from Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman (who has now gone on to oversee the shared Universal Monster universe), written by Joe Hill. Here’s hoping this attempt has better success than the last–because I would look forward to it!
What are your thoughts, horror fans? Are you excited to see so much history being incorporated into your scary stories? Tell us in the comments!
Featured Image Credit: DeviantArtist oliverojm