Anchor Bay Entertainment label revived with releases of Abruptio and Dinner with Leatherface

Anchor Bay Entertainment is being revived with the release of the puppet horror film Abruptio and the documentary Dinner with Leatherface

Back in the late ’90s and early 2000s, Anchor Bay Entertainment was a major player in the horror world, giving DVD releases to films like the Evil Dead trilogy, George A. Romero’s Dead trilogy, the Sleepaway Camp franchise, The Hills Have Eyes, The Car, Maniac, Prom Night, some of the Hellraisers, Halloweens, and much more. Then things changed, and eventually Anchor Bay got folded into Lionsgate Home Entertainment… but now Deadline reports that the Anchor Bay Entertainment label is being revived, and the revival is starting off with the releases of puppet horror film Abruptio and Dinner with Leatherface, a documentary that looks at the life, career, and legacy of original Leatherface actor Gunnar Hansen!

Umbrelic Entertainment co-founders Thomas Zambeck and Brian Katz are behind the return of Anchor Bay Entertainment, and they’re planning to use the label to bring the world “genre films, undiscovered treasures, cult classics, and remastered catalog releases.” Deadline notes that the new Anchor Bay doesn’t include the previous label’s library.

Zambeck, who worked at the original Anchor Bay, provided the following statement: “We had an opportunity to take the name of a beloved genre film brand, one we feel a personal connection to, for our new company. This is a new venture, unaffiliated with any previous incarnations. We aim to honor the history and spirit of the past as we look for interesting films that break the mold, and will be discovered by new generations for years to come.

Almost nine years have gone by since we first heard of Abruptio, a surrealistic horror/thriller entirely performed by lifelike puppets (which is why it took so long to complete). The story centers on a guy down on his luck who wakes to find an explosive device has been implanted in his neck. He must carry out heinous crimes in order to stay alive while trying to identify the mastermind manipulating the now twisted and strange world around him.

Written and directed by Evan Marlowe, the film stars James Marsters (Buffy the Vampire Slayer), Christopher McDonald (Thelma & Louise), Hana Mae Lee (Pitch Perfect franchise), Jordan Peele (Get Out), Sid Haig (The Devil’s Rejects), Rich Fulcher (Wonka), and Robert Englund (A Nightmare on Elm Street franchise). Kerry Marlowe executive produced with Marlowe, Barry Finlayson, Sue Finlayson, and Martin Lee White.

Directed by Michael Kallio, Dinner with Leatherface has the following synopsis: Friends, colleagues, filmmakers, and fellow actors share personal stories and discuss the dichotomy between the maniacal chainsaw-wielding character Gunnar Hansen played on-screen and the very intelligent, creative, soft-spoken man he actually was in real life.

Produced by Lowell Northrop and co-produced by Michael Felsher (another Anchor Bay alumnus), the documentary features interviews with Bruce Campbell, Barbara Crampton, Betsy Baker, Brian O’Halloran, Danielle Harris, Linnea Quigley, Kane Hodder, and Debbie Rochon, as well as all of the remaining cast of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, director of photography Daniel Pearl, and producer/co-writer Kim Henkel.

I have Anchor Bay Entertainment to thank for a lot of the DVDs in my collection, so I’m glad to hear the label is coming back, and Abruptio and Dinner with Leatherface sound like a great way to get it started all over again. Are you glad to hear Anchor Bay is returning? Share your thoughts on this one by leaving a comment below.


Source: Deadline

About the Author

Cody is a news editor and film critic, focused on the horror arm of, and writes scripts for videos that are released through the JoBlo Originals and JoBlo Horror Originals YouTube channels. In his spare time, he's a globe-trotting digital nomad, runs a personal blog called Life Between Frames, and writes novels and screenplays.