Wednesday, May 14, 2008


First thing's first. Sorry I've been away so long. Things have been pretty hectic here, and I let my work on the site slide a bit. I wish I could say it would never happen again, but that's just probably not going to be true. Still, if you stick with me, I'll stick with you. Keep checking back and you'll see updates. Sometimes several a day, sometimes only a couple every few weeks. But I'll try to make it as regualr as possible. Right, now onto the big skinny.

In 1987, a small little horror film made a pretty good dent at the box office. Although THE GATE has mostly faded into obscurity, it had a few things to peak interest back in 1987. For one thing, it was one of the first horror films to get a "PG-13" rating. Sure, we had other films that fit that mold. But unlike those films, THE GATE did not appear to be a GREMLINS knock-off, nor did it seem to be a sedate ghost story, nor did it seem to blend its horror roots within a less threatening fantasy or sci-fi setting. No, THE GATE looked like a bona fide horror film, and it was a pretty fun one at that. The film gained some press by opening the same weekend as the much-hyped and now infamous bomb ISHTAR, and this low-budget shocker gave that bloated Hope and Crosby vehicle a severe run for its money. It was a rare moneymaker for short-lived indie studio New Century/Vista.

Now comes word that THE GATE is getting the sequel treatment. According to the Hollywood Reporter and Bloody Disgusting, a sequel has just been announced at Cannes. Originally, the plan was to do a remake of THE GATE in 3-D. However, someone must have realized that horror films are being made left and right and even the 3-D thing is not a completely original selling point, since the MY BLOODY VALENTINE and PIRAHNA remakes are already going down that same road.

Instead, we are getting THE GATE: 20 YEARS LATER. Expect the title to change, mainly because it has already been 21 years since THE GATE and will be even farther away once the film is actually finished and released. No word on if the original film's director, Tibor Takacs, is on board in any capacity. Recently, Takacs has had a career resurgence of sorts making those Sci-fi Channel films - most of which are nowhere near as entertaining as they should be.

In the director's chair this time will be first-timer Randall William Cook. Don't fret about inexperience as he does seem to know his way around a set and has studied closely with at least one low-budget horror pioneer. Cook is a three-time Oscar winner for his effects work on Peter Jackson's LORD OF THE RINGS trilogy. Something BD's article that does not mention however is that Cook was also special effects supervisor on the original GATE, as well as Takacs' I, MADMAN and DEATHLINE. So, he knows the material. Cook's other effects credits include CAVEMAN, GHOSTBUSTERS, 2010, FRIGHT NIGHT and POLTERGEIST II: THE OTHER SIDE. It looks as though he was also a big player in the effects work for Charles Band's Full Moon label.

It is unclear if this film will be a direct follow-up to the original, or make some mention of 1993's overlooked THE GATE II.

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