I recently had the pleasure of visiting (all too briefly) the set of THE CRAZIES, the remake of George Romero's 1973 chiller. While in Georgia hanging out on the set, I got to watch director Breck Eisner work, and the man certainly appeared to be an efficient craftsman. As many of you may already know, THE CRAZIES isn't the first remake he's been attached to. In fact, he's still very much attached to two high profile reimaginings: THE CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON and FLASH GORDON.
I spoke with Mr. Eisner on the phone the other night and got an update - or lack thereof - on both projects. In plain speaking, neither are very close. Indeed, Eisner isn't really sure which would go before cameras first.
"I love them both, they're both big movies. I think I will push both of them forward at full pedal and hope one of them goes first."
On the status of FLASH GORDON: "We broke story with the writers [Matt] Sazama and [Burk] Sharpless for the last five or six months or so. They went to draft just as we started shooting, and they're going to get to me a draft at wrap. I'll read it and do notes and we'll do a polish on that and give it to the studio a couple months from now. Hopefully the studio will like it and we'll go forward. It's a big movie and the studio has got to love the script."
"The thing about FLASH is, you've got to throw away the 80s version of it. I want it to be intense, aggressive, gritty and real. For me it's about reinventing FLASH - we're still staying true to the adventure origins of it, and the adventurous spirit in that movie, absolutely. It's this man brought to another planet and uniting the disperate groups on Mongo, but there is a gritty, intense, dynamic, active quality to the movie. Very modern. It's not camp."
On his vision of CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON: "I want it to be scary. It's a bigger movie, so it's not an R rated scary, it's gonna be a PG-13 scary. CREATURE takes you to a place you've never been before, it's one of the last untamed places on the edge of the Earth where you find this creature that has been living and hiding there forever, basically. It's definitely going for a dark adventure tone, but I want it to be scary."
Keep your eyes peeled for my article about visiting the set of THE CRAZIES, as well as a more in-depth interview with Mr. Eisner, as both will be hitting AITH in the next few days!