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5 Writers Inspired by Lovecraft’s Influence Over Horror – iHorror

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The uniqueness of H.P. Lovecraft was his ability to explore the Unseen – the Beyond if you will. He was a man who understood one vital thing: We are all doomed if whatever is out there in space discovers us. Or if whatever lies in deathlike slumber at the heart of the Abyss should ever awaken, what hope might we have in escape?

It was a darkly pessimistic view for a deathly pessimistic century. One torn by two world wars, when Man no longer had to rely on rocks, blades or bullets to kill his brother. Man cracked open the Atom and by science could now turn the planet into a neon-glowing apocalypse.

Hopelessness was a way of life for many, and out of this century – almost ordained from it – Lovecraft gave voice to horrors beyond any human ability to cope with.

image courtesy of artist Michael Whelan

Yes, there were many before him who made a path through the dimension of fear, but he single-handedly reshaped the dark realm, firmly establishing the modern-day horror tale. So influential is Lovecraft’s contributions to the genre that we now use the term “Loveraftian” to describe something that strikes glaring similarities to the expert Mythos he invented. An entire sub-genre exists now thanks to him.

Alien. The Thing. The Fly. The Mist. The Void. The Gates of Hell. Evil Dead. Re-Animator. The Fog.
These are a few movies with the Lovecraftian influence on them.

Video games like Dead Space, Bloodborne, Quake, Amnesia: The Dark Descent, and Skyrim: Dragon Born all have the Mythos touch upon them.

5. Stephen King

Stephen King himself – a man of such colossal influence over the vast region of the written world – has humbly admitted that had there been no Lovecraft, there certainly would never have been any room for a Stephen King.

And that’s an aspect of Lovecraft’s career I find fascinating. Not only did he invent an entirely new – and seemingly never-ending – sub-genre, but he also gave many aspiring writers their own voices to be heard. Had he not, our world would have been robbed of some very much needed chilling classics. As we’ve already learned, we might not have had Stephen King otherwise.

That means we would not have a Pet Sematary to explore or Pennywise to fear! How dreadful!

image via IMDB, courtesy of Warner Bros.

Stephen King’s short story Jerusalem’s Lot shares many familiar hints and tones similar to Lovecraft’s. In Needful Things, King takes the liberty to mention Yog Sothoth, a hellish entity straight out of the Mythos.

4. Robert Bloch

Among the Lovecraft circle – as they were favorably called (pen pals and loyal fans of his dawning creativity) – was young Robert Bloch. A writer whose name may not be easily recognized among even diehard genre fans, but his work is highly praised. Chiefly because Bloch managed to scare and chill the very master of suspense himself, Alfred Hitchcock, with his little novel Psycho.

Hitchcock would admit, “Psycho all came from Robert Bloch’s book.” Let sink in. Psycho, a movie that pretty much birthed and solidified the slasher genre, would never have happened had it not been for the encouraging friendship Bloch had with Lovecraft.

We have Lovecraft to thank – in part – for Freddy, Jason, Michael Myers, Leatherface, Mad Man Marz, Ghostface, and certainly Norman Bates.

3. Robert E. Howard

Another young writer who lent his brilliant talents to the expansion of the Mythos was Robert E. Howard – a personal favorite of mine, I must admit. His own Mythos contributions are searing as heated steel hammered upon the blacksmith’s anvil.

With his definitive crimson savagery, Howard hollows out the conscience of the human heart and reveals the black-rot festering in the decayed pulp. If you read but only one of his Mythos tales, I strongly recommend The Black Stone, the story of an explorer set out to test the local legends of an onyx monolith and the gruesome cult that was rumored to have formed around it.

Robert E. Howard also gave birth to his own sub-genre in the field of fantasy: Swords and Sorcery, a sub-genre that went on to inspire Dungeons and Dragons and countless other gaming platforms. The two most beloved heroes of Howard’s antediluvian world of brute strength and bizarre mysticism are Red Sonja and the unconquered Conan of Hyperboria.

2. Mike Mignola

Going outside of the Lovecraft Circle now, we find a humble and quiet comic book artist known for his incredibly unique style of art. His name is Mike Mignola, and his creation is the one and only Hellboy.

Hellboy by Mike Mignola

Who doesn’t love Big Red? Cigar chomping and good-natured Hellboy has fought demons and evils that are spawned straight out of the ether of the Mythos.

Seeds of Destruction is a great place to start for anyone needing a Hellboy vs the Mythos fix.

 

1. Brian Lumley

It would be nothing short of an offense if I ended this list without mentioning a personal favorite of mine – Brian Lumley. Among the expanded Mythos very few have contributed more to the grizzly tales of Ancient Evil than Mr. Lumley. In my library alone there are three volumes of the Cthulhu Mythos composed entirely by him.

Not only does Lumley offer some brilliant additions to the Mythos, but he’s also given fans a gripping fantasy saga about a paranormal scholar with the gift to travel between dimensions, pass into other worlds, and is opposed by Ancient Powers straight out of the pages of Lovecraft. That hero is Titus Crow.

art courtesy of Bob Eggleton

Now for me, I read Lumley for one series in particular – Necroscope. This is my unrivaled favorite – FAVORITE – vampire story! A blood-stained saga of vampires spawned from the vile seed of Satan himself right after he was hurled from the grace of God.

These creatures of the night are not romantic, but the demonic manifestation of carnal lusts and cruelest murder. The series begins on Earth but takes the reader across the cosmos to the very world of the Vampyr themselves.

The vampire strain is a parasitic and spiritual curse that latches itself to the spinal cord of its host and grows along the nerves, stretching and spreading until infesting the entirety of its victim until only a brief and mocking glimmer of the original host is recognized.

Still, though this is an original work by Brian Lumley, even here he can’t help but nod to his mentor and include several aspects of the beloved Mythos.

art courtesy of Bob Eggleton

 

“Since reading Lumley’s Necroscope series, I know that vampires really do exist!” – H.R. Giger.

Lovecraft’s influence remains never-ending. So when you walk that well-worn path of Fear and enter the mist-shrouded forests, look for the signs of eldritch horrors seeping through reality. Take heed that you yourself are not transformed by the vile presence of Yog Sothoth or the Black Goat of the Woods with a Thousand Young.

Travel well, dear reader. You know you’ll find me walking among the tombs here, paying respect to those who have given us so much to admire.

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Winnie the Pooh: Blood and Honey – Extended Clip

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Brace yourselves, Disney fans! The sweet and lovable Winnie the Pooh takes a dark turn in the latest extended scene of Winnie the Pooh: Blood and Honey.

Pooh, with his mouth drooling with sticky honey, transforms into a ruthless tormentor, the sounds of whipping and screaming fill this just released clip.

Send the kiddos to another room, this one is going to be a wild ride! Watch the clip below:

The much-anticipated Winnie the Pooh: Blood and Honey is hitting theaters on February 15th, and it’s shaping up to be one wild ride.

With word of mouth spreading faster than a stampede of heffalumps, the film’s 1-day theatrical run has been extended to a nine-day theater release, set to be shown in over 1,500 theaters nationwide.

The buzz is so strong that the studio behind the project is already planning a sequel, greenlighting it before any box office numbers even come in. The film’s official Twitter page made the announcement with the tantalizing caption “More blood. More honey”.

They also released a teaser poster featuring Winnie-The-Pooh 2, front and center, with a tagline that reads “Friends will gather… to take revenge”. Get ready to be lured into the world of Winnie the Pooh like never before.

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Keanu Reeves Will Return As ‘Constantine’ in Sequel Directed by Francis Lawrence

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Keanu Reeves will finally return as John Constantine in a film directed by Francis Lawrence once again. Deadline reports that the new film has been given the greenlight. The first film came out back in 2005 and introduced a very different version of DC’s Hellblazer John Constantine.

Keanu Reeves offered his first public comments regarding Constantine 2 going into development under Warner Bros since its announcement last year.

Reeves explained just how much he loved playing the role in the first movie, joking that he was similar to the titular character from Oliver Twist in asking the studio “Can I please have some more?”

“I don’t know if it was unfinished business but it was definitely a role that I loved. And I thought that Francis Lawrence, the director, did such amazing work. I loved playing that character, and I really enjoyed the film. I was like, [adopts Oliver Twist voice] ‘Can I please have some more?'”

Constantine 2 by diamonddead-Art

This apparently became a regular conversation between Reeves and Warner Bros., with the studio regularly saying no to his requests:

“I kept asking almost every year. I’d be like, ‘Can I please?’ [and] they’d be like, ‘No, no!'”

Once the studio finally said “sure” and greenlit the sequel, Reeves and his team quickly got to work and are now “just starting to try and put a story together.”

Reeves was unable to contain his excitement, making it clear that he’s going to “try [his] darndest to try and realize that dream” of making this movie even with all the obstacles in the way:

“So it’s exciting. It’s almost like an open playground that we can hopefully cook something up and play in, and I guess get out of the playground and prepare a meal. But I’m looking forward to it, and hopefully it can happen. You don’t know how these things go. But I’m definitely going to try my darndest to try and realize that dream.”

The Constantine sequel will be directed by Lawrence and produced by Bad Robot with JJ Abrams and Hannah Minghella. Plus, Akiva Goldsmith is set to write.

Over the years since the release of 2005’s Constantine, Matt Ryan played a very authentic version of the blonde, British demonologist for a shortlived NBC series. Ryan has also given the character voice in animated films as well as portrayed the character in spinoffs to other DC worlds such as Legends of Tomorrow.

The synopsis for Constantine went like this:

As a suicide survivor, demon hunter John Constantine (Keanu Reeves) has literally been to hell and back — and he knows that when he dies, he’s got a one-way ticket to Satan’s realm unless he can earn enough goodwill to climb God’s stairway to heaven. While helping policewoman Angela Dodson (Rachel Weisz) investigate her identical twin’s apparent suicide, Constantine becomes caught up in a supernatural plot involving both demonic and angelic forces. Based on the DC/Vertigo “Hellblazer” comics.

Over the years we have heard buzz about a possible Constantine sequel several times, with no actual flame behind the sparks. So, it is definitely exciting to see the film actually moving forward.

Stay tuned for more Keanu Constantine details.

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Blumhouse’s Five Nights at Freddy’s Has Begun Filming

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Filming for the highly anticipated Blumhouse production of Five Nights at Freddy’s has officially begun! A sneak peek photo posted by Blum himself reveals that the flick is being shot under the oh-so-delicious faux title of Bad Cupcake. Yum!

We’re ready for a horror-filled romp with Matthew Lillard (Thir13en Ghosts, Scream). He’s one of our favorite people to watch, and we can’t wait to see what he brings to the film!

Joining him is none other than Josh Hutcherson (Tragedy Girls) and Mary Stuart Masterson (Skin). Emma Tammi (The Wind) is directing this horror-themed video game adaptation, with the team from Jim Henson’s Creature Shop conjuring up the evil animatronics. We can’t wait to see the nightmare fuel this team brews up!

The new film will follow a troubled security guard as he begins working at Freddy Fazbear’s Pizza. While spending his first night on the job, he realizes the night shift at Freddy’s won’t be so easy to make it through.

We’re happy to see production underway and look forward to seeing some BTS clips soon!

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