He’s responsible for making valentines bloody and putting Jason Vorhees in space, now Hollywood horror film writer Todd Farmer wants to bring The Dark Things to the Gold Coast. The writer, behind films such as My Bloody Valentine 3D and Jason X, is on the coast until Wednesday with producer Kerri Hill-Grisham as they scout locations for a $25 million horror production to be shot in 2015. The film, titled The Dark Things, will be made in 3D and is set in a small town where Aboriginal legends are coming to life.
Farmer says it’s his first trip out of America and he has been using the time to research the Australian way of life through `Aussie films' and `people watching'.
"I started the outline for this then decided it would be better to just come here and meet the people, see the locations and look at pubs,'' he says.
"I can write pretending to be an Aussie, but I need to come here to experience it.
"It's really quite fun because I've never done anything like this.
"At the end of the day it will all come down to the story, it will all come down to the characters.
"I grew up reading Stephen King and he was great at taking ordinary people and dropping them into extraordinary situations and that's exactly what I'm going to do.
"I just like to scare people.''
Farmer also serves as a producer on the film and says he will write the script with Patrick Lussier, who is first choice to direct. Farmer and Lussier regularly collaborate, first on My Bloody Valentine 3D which Lussier directed and edited, then on the up and coming Drive Angry 3D, which he co-wrote with Farmer, and directed and edited, and Halloween III, which he directed and edited...
The films producer and co-writer Kerri Hill-Grisham says they have already met with Warner Roadshow Studios, where they hope to shoot most of the film, and have received support from Screen Queensland.
"It's an Australian story about Aboriginals, it's not going to work in Canada,'' she says.
"I'm from here, I love it here and Aussies like to back each other.
"I'm bringing home a good story with top Hollywood people.''
After being seriously injured in a horse riding accident 21-years ago, Ms Hill-Grisham became a successful para-equestrian and started working extensively as a make-up and special-effects artist in Hollywood. She says they have been consulting with experts from Griffith University about aboriginal legends and that there is a market for the film because it is an `original' idea.
"All the same stuff is coming out of Hollywood at the moment with sequels and prequels,'' she says.
"This is different and seeing Aboriginal culture in 3D, how amazing would that be?''
Michael Lake (The Condemned, 12 Rounds, The Marine 2) is attached to produce with Harry Manfredini (Friday the 13th 1,2 and 3, Freddy vs. Jason, Jason X) composing and Michael Broom (Wolverine, Aliens V Predator: Requiem, Surrogates) coming on board as the concept artist. Farmer first came to the attention of horror fans when he put the iconic villain Jason Vorhees in space with Jason X (2002) (pictured below). Loved and hated in equal amounts by fans of the genre, he had more success with thriller The Messengers (2007) starring Twilight's Kristen Stewart. After My Bloody Valentine 3D (2009) was a hit, he wrote Messengers 2: The Scare Crow (2009). Due for release next year are his films Drive Angry 3D, starring Nicolas Cage and Amber Heard, and Halloween III. For those of you playing at home he has occasional cameos in his films, most notably as the naked trucker in My Bloody Valentine 3D.
And yes, I know I promised you readers the juicy juice on this project on Thursday, however, I have been chronically sick since then and only been able to stomach getting out of bed today to put this together. Flu of death be damned, I’ll bring you the full interview transcript tomorrow because there are frankly too many excellent details to include in this tiny snippet. Suffice to say I had a geek-out moment meeting Farmer, as I’m quite the fan, and had a ridiculous amount of questions to ask him. He endured me and besides being a genuiely decent and humourous dude, he has some hugely intriguing ideas for The Dark Things.