Side Effects May Vary: The Dead Next Door director J.R. Bookwalter returns with a sci-fi horror comedy

The Dead Next Door and Robot Ninja director J.R. Bookwalter returns with Side Effects May Vary, now available for Blu-ray pre-order

J.R. Bookwalter isn’t a name that comes up often when people are discussing awesome genre filmmakers, but there are many of us out there who see him as a hero and an inspiration – and to us, the fact that he has returned to directing after a twenty year break is a major event. In recent months, Bookwalter has been on tour with his new sci-fi horror comedy Side Effects May Vary, bringing it to 35 theatres across the United States (plus a pair of festival screenings in Canada and Germany)… and now it’s time for Side Effects May Vary to come to home video! The movie will be getting a streaming release by the end of the year, but the streaming version is going to be three minutes shorter than the uncut theatrical release version. The only way to get a copy of the uncut, 84 minute version is by pre-ordering a copy of the limited edition Blu-ray and DVD release (only 1000 copies will be made) through Bookwalter’s Kickstarter campaign. Discs will start shipping out in October.

Discs will be region free and some will come with a Kickstarter-exclusive Blu-ray slipcover autographed by director J.R. Bookwalter, limited to 300 units.

Here’s the synopsis: Side Effects May Vary is a fast-paced, funny, goopy sci-fi/horror throwback inspired by the monster movie drive-in classics Bookwalter grew up with, particularly The Incredible Melting Man (1977). With the world gripped by a deadly pandemic, science denier Glenn Rollins turns to an experimental vaccine as treatment for a lingering sickness. Much to the surprise of his doctor, wife, and friends, the remedy immediately fixes what ails him. But Glenn will soon discover the only thing more fatal than the virus… is the cure!

James L. Edwards (who also wrote the screenplay), Drew Fortier, Floyd Ewing Jr., Tina Krause, Sasha Graham, Brinke Stevens, Wendy Zier, and Tom Hoover star. Speaking of Krause, “The eventual streaming release will be censored, replacing one particular crowd-favorite shot of actress Tina Krause with a cover take. (You’ll know which shot when you see it!)

The Blu-ray and DVD discs come with the following special features: 84-minute uncut theatrical version feature (1080p HD, 1.78:1 aspect ratio) with DTS-HD MA 5.1 surround (Blu-ray only) or Dolby Digital 5.1 surround (DVD only) and Dolby Digital 2.0 stereo mixes – Audio commentary with director J.R. Bookwalter – Theatrical roadshow teaser – Roadshow opening night Q&A at Harris Theater in Pittsburgh, moderated by Art Ettinger of Ultra Violent Magazine (Blu-ray only) – English subtitles – Two trailers (teaser and final theatrical trailer)

Bookwalter’s previous directing credits include The Dead Next Door, Robot Ninja, Zombie Cop, Kingdom of the Vampire, Maximum Impact, Humanoids from Atlantis, Galaxy of the Dinosaurs, Ozone, The Sandman, Polymorph, Witchouse II: Blood Coven, Witchouse 3: Demon Fire, and Mega Scorpions.

Are you a Bookwalter fan, and will you be ordering a copy of Side Effects May Vary on Blu-ray? Let us know by leaving a comment below. I have already secured my copy!

Side Effects May Vary

Source: Kickstarter

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.