Last night, original A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET star Heather Langenkamp, who will next be seen in the horror movie HOME, dropped a bombshell on the internet when she revealed that she has been cast in a new HELLRAISER sequel.
As it turns out, the tenth installment in the HELLRAISER franchise already started filming in secret earlier this week, being shot on location in Oklahoma City and Guthrie, Oklahoma under the title "JUDGMENT" (and it isn't hard to imagine that this project could end up being called HELLRAISER: JUDGMENT).
The new film is written and directed by Gary Tunnicliffe, who has provided special effects makeup for every HELLRAISER since HELLRAISER III: HELL ON EARTH and wrote the previous entry in the series, 2011's HELLRAISER: REVELATIONS. As has happened in the series before, it seems that this was an original script that has been retrofitted into being a HELLRAISER sequel, as Tunnicliffe had tried to get a film called JUDGMENT (described as "SEVEN meets HELLRAISER") off the ground in 2013.
'Judgment' features a police officer’s pursuit of a serial killer who undergoes a final accounting of his soul by creatures of the underworld.
When described that way, it sounds similar to HELLRAISER: INFERNO, but I think Tunnicliffe's idea is actually quite different.
You may recall that HELLRAISER: REVELATIONS was a very low budget film, put into production simply so Dimension wouldn't lose the rights to the property while the HELLRAISER they really want to make, a remake, continued to languish in development hell. Given how quickly and quietly this JUDGMENT film came together, it sounds like this may be the same situation. One thing JUDGMENT definitely has in common with REVELATIONS is a lack of Doug Bradley.
Bradley, who achieved horror icon status by playing franchise poster child Pinhead in every HELLRAISER up to REVELATIONS, took to his personal Facebook page last night to notify fans that he will not be involved with this sequel, either. The reason?
Gary said he would send me a copy of the script when he had completed a second draft, but before I could be allowed to set eyes on the precious document, I was required to sign a gagging order. This was a three page document preventing me from talking about the script 'in restrooms', 'on elevators', 'in restaurants' or 'in cellular telephone conversations which may be overheard'. There was also dark reference to 'people talking out of turn at conventions'. I read this thing in disbelief, and informed Gary I would not be signing it.
And that's that. Clearly, I am deemed too much of a security risk to be allowed to read a Hellraiser script.
Also not involved "in any way, shape, or form" is HELLRAISER creator Clive Barker.
A sucker for sequels, I'll give this movie a chance, but it's not off to a great start. How can you leave Doug Bradley out just because he reacted to signing a paper the same way Randall "Pink" Floyd did in DAZED AND CONFUSED?