Drafthouse Films and Olive Films are re-releasing the cult hit and rarely seen 1981 movie “Roar” in theaters on April 17. “Roar” has been touted as a movie like no other, and one that will never be made again. The tagline reads, “No animals were harmed in the making of this picture, 70 cast and crew members were”.
The movie follows estranged wife Madelaine (Tippi Hedren) who visits her husband (Noel Marshall); a man living on a refuge with a menagerie of wild beasts. These animals include tigers, elephants, leopards and cheetahs. She arrives at the sanctuary with her 3 children (A young Melanie Griffith among them), but her husband is nowhere to be found, instead she is met by a pride of lions and untamed beasts.
The intrigue of “Roar” is that it was even made in the first place. Produced by Noel Marshall (“The Exorcist”), the movie is filled with cringe-worthy shadenfruede, which depicts animal attacks and maulings. The problem is, some of these altercations are real. Although this movie is a big-budget Hollywood production, it could also be viewed as a documentary of sorts. The concept was to let the cats interact naturally with the cast and crew. But these animals aren’t predictable; at 8 feet long and up to 400 pounds these cats act purely on improvisation.
Of the blood shed on the set: Hedren was injured from a bite wound, which wasn’t edited out for the movie. Producer Noel Marshall was hospitalized for a very terrifying lion attack, and a young Cinematographer named Jon De Bont (Speed, The Haunting) was scalped during filming and needed 120 stitches. Assistant Director Doran Kauper was bitten in the throat during a take and it almost cost him his life. Melanie Griffin (Hedren’s real-life daugher) suffered such a major laceration, it required plastic surgery.
Tim League, CEO of Drafthouse Films, has written an essay about the film, the cast, and the constant disasters that plagued the picture. His essay titled “The Grandeur of Roar” describes animal professional’s reaction to Hedren’s and Marshall’s pitch for the film, “Upon approaching animal trainers for support, they were told their idea was a suicide mission and were dismissed as ‘brainsick’ and ‘completely and utterly insane.’“ League writes.
IMDb reports that the animal attacks in “Roar” are real. Over 150 cats were used in the film, the crew had to remain behind safety cages and protective barriers, but sometimes that wasn’t enough. Leagues’ article says that Hedren and Marshall had been breeding the lions in their Beverly Hills home until it became too small and they moved to a ranch north of Los Angeles and began shooting “Roar”.
Despite the danger of working with such unpredictable wildlife, Mother Nature also took its toll on the production. The Southern California filming location suffered Wildfires and a flood, killing some of the cats and bringing production to a halt. The problems were so severe the movie took 11 years to complete.
Variety has called “Roar” the “most disaster-plagued film in the history of Hollywood.”
Tippi Hedren has been quoted as saying,”This was probably one of the most dangerous films that Hollywood has ever seen. It’s amazing no one was killed.”
Recent reviews of the film have compared it to what might be a bloody production of a Walt Disney film.
“It’s like Walt Disney went insane and made a snuff version of SWISS FAMILY ROBINSON!” Hitflix
“Just watching it feels dangerous!” Movies.com
“Like watching a live-action Lion King as Mufasa holds a switchblade to your throat.” – Complex
The movie will have a theatrical re-release on April, 17, head over to Drafthouse Pictures for more details.
‘Piggy’ Wins Best Horror Film at Fantastic Fest
Director, Carlota Pereda has a lot to be excited about today her gory coming-of-age film, Piggy just won Fantastic Fest’s Best Horror Film Award! The film is incredible and will have you cheering for the outsider and damning the bullies to their fates. It’s an incredibly endearing film that has as much heart as it does terror. It is really no to be missed.
The synopsis for Piggy goes like this:
With the summer sun beating down on her rural Spanish town, Sara hides away in her parent’s butcher shop. A teenager whose excess weight makes her the target of incessant bullying, she flees a clique of capricious girls who torment her at the town pool, only to stumble upon them being brutally kidnapped by a stranger, who drives off with them in his van. When the police begin asking questions, Sara keeps quiet. Intrigued by the stranger — an interest that’s mutual — she’s torn between revealing the truth and protecting the man who saved her.
Piggy stars Laura Galán, Richard Holmes, Carmen Machi, Irene Ferreiro & Camielle Aguilar, with the special collaborations of Pilar Castro & Claudia Salas.
Don’t miss Piggy when it arrives on demand on October 14 and in Alamo Drafthouses on October 7.
Creepy Smilers Caught on Camera at Major League Baseball Games
The horror movie Smile is opening on Friday, and in a genius bit of marketing, the studio gave horror and baseball fans a creepy meta experience this past Friday.
On September 23, viewers of three Major League Baseball (MLB) games had people in the stands, near the cameras, who had disturbingly evil smiles across their faces, sometimes for innings at a time.
Innings and Grinnings
Sports Illustrated reported on the story citing three games in which the grinning people appeared: Red Sox-Yankees, Mets-Athletics, and Cardinals-Dodgers.
The stunt was effective. Unnerved fans and viewers quickly went to social media and posted about the smilers, making the whole gag a success.
But sports fans weren’t the only ones creeped out by the grinning ghouls. During the live broadcast of Good Morning America, behind hosts Hoda Kotb and Al Roker, a scare actor could be seen with the same evil Cheshire grin watching them from the street window.
The Psychotic Smirk
This deceptively trustworthy facial expression is known as the Psychotic smirk according to tvtropes.com.
“The Psychotic Smirk is a favorite with Big Bads everywhere. There’s no need to broadcast just how dangerous they are – everyone’s got a pretty good idea already, but no one can prove it. The important thing is to smile with only one side of the mouth. Sometimes, it’s accompanied by a Finger Wag as if to say “Nice try, sucker” if the hero had attempted to defeat them.”
That concept might be behind the plot of Smile which follows Dr. Rose Cotter who after experiencing a traumatic event notices that people start to smile just before becoming murderously unhinged.
Sosie Bacon — Kevin Bacon’s daughter — portrays the troubled Cotter in the film and she says it was a tough role, and audiences aren’t ready.
“Truthfully, I wasn’t fully aware of how much this part would wear on me when I began the movie,” Bacon told Orange Magazine. “It’s physically demanding, because your body doesn’t understand the difference between acting and real life. But honestly, I don’t know that anything can prepare you for an experience like ‘Smile.’”
Smile opens in theaters on Friday, September 30.
‘Mystery Science Theater 3000’ is Going All Out With a 3D Halloween Special
Mystery Science Theater 3000 is back, y’all! For a huge 3D Halloween special that brings back Jonah and the Satellite of Love crew. The guys will be screening 1961’s The Mask 3D and holding a special costume contest where fans are invited to send in their own Halloween costumes.
If you are interested in submitting your costumes you have to do that by October 16. You can submit those costume photos RIGHT HERE.
The MST3K event description goes like this:
Join Jonah and the bots for the premiere of The Mask 3D, a 1961 horror film about a cursed skull mask, and the first time the crew of the Satellite of Love will be subjected to a 3D movie! Filmed in iconic anaglyph 3D, the episode will be viewable with any pair of red and blue 3D glasses. A non-3D version of the episode will also be available.
In order to watch the MST3K Halloween special, you need to tune into The Gizmoplex. It is available through iOS, Android, Roku, Amazon Fire TV and more.
The big MST3K event arives on October 28. For more information on how to watch the Halloween Special head over HERE.