With 2010 behind us - and let's face it, that was one seriously weird year - we're refreshed and ready to look ahead to a new crop of genre projects and prospects. Some of them have been buzzing wildly around the web for months, and in a lot of cases we've been lucky enough to get the inside track and grab some extra details for you. Sure, we all know how it feels to get a just a title, maybe a poster or a teaser, a celeb name or two, and not much else... but hey, what's more thrilling to a horror fan than the unknown? No seriously, there's quite a lot of stuff we do know so far, and we'll break it all down for you here. Flip it over to check out a select few of the hot horror happenings in the works (we hope) for the year, and why we really want our most fearful New Year's wishes to come true!
Terror on TV: Locked and Loaded
AMC committed to a 13-episode second run for The Walking Dead, but despite the (literally) explosive Season 1 finale, it's sadly not returning till the Fall. Fortunately, there might be some wicked shows to keep you sweet in the meantime: one with potential for badass-ness is the adaptation of Joe Hill's comic Locke & Key. According to an article in Deadline a while back, Fox/DreamWorks finally agreed to run with a full season, with a tentative Summer 2011 launch. In the meantime, among the year's first interesting TV prospects is SyFy's Being Human, adapted from the BBC series about a vampire, a werewolf and a ghost sharing the same house - a premise way too cool to pass up. That one kicks off January 17th, so you can get right on it.
MGM Out of the Woods and Into the "Cabin?"
And by that, we mean the troubled studio is likely out of financial crisis and presumably back onboard with The Cabin in the Woods, thanks to their escape from bankruptcy - which had previously stalled out the much anticipated Joss Whedon-produced comedy-horror project from its planned early 2011 release. The new launch date is currently unknown, but at least it sounds like things may be back on track again. Cabin isn't the only genre title nearly shit-canned by MGM's money woes - everything from The Hobbit to the Robocop reboot (which may still have Darren Aronofsky attached) was feeling the pain. All that may change now that the studio has found new ownership, though it's too early to tell whether the studio will dust off those Outer Limits and Poltergeist remakes.
More Dark Blooms From Magnolia
Magnolia Pictures already get the love thanks to their work over the past few years raising the profile of flicks like [REC], Let the Right One In and The House of the Devil, and and we're hoping their strong record will continue in the new year. It already seems they're headed in a great direction: they recently picked up I Saw the Devil, the controversial thriller from Korean director Kim Jee-woon (A Tale of Two Sisters) about a secret agent who sets out to destroy the serial killer who murdered his fiancée. Also a definite in 2011 is Chris (Triangle) Smith's medieval torture-fest Black Death, which will actually get an On Demand release on February 4th, ahead of its March 11th theatrical debut. Also up for early 2011, but without an official release date, is Brad (Session 9) Anderson's apocalyptic supernatural thriller Vanishing on 7th Street.
Will "Scream 4" Bring Back Craven Raves?
After the drab reception of My Soul to Take, Wes Craven's directing career needs a bump, and a return to the known quantity of the Scream series could do it. It's been a decade since the last installment, and the franchise might be ripe for re-interpretation... emphasis on the word "might." But how? In this age of rampant 3-D remakes, the postmodern irony of the first three Scream films could be traded in for a satire of creative vacuum and overblown studio hype, and there's certainly plenty of fodder to work with there. Craven, writer Kevin Williamson and producer Bob Weinstein seem to be laying out a game plan for a second trilogy - kinda like a slasher Star Wars - and the fourth chapter might be a testing ground for that idea, so we'll find out when Scream 4 hits theaters on April 15th... as if that day wasn't scary enough.
Will "Super 8" Be Super-Great?
The viral buzz surrounding the summer blockbuster matchup of high-concept heavyweights Steven Spielberg and J.J. Abrams continues to build, escalated by a mysterious teaser (containing embedded single-frame clues) depicting an unseen thingamabob hammering its way out of a derailed freight train. The main story reportedly involves something related to that incident being captured on super-8 film by a group of kids in 1979, but from there it's still a riddle wrapped in an enigma (some of the footage and "leaked" stills could be misdirection), but it looks like it has the potential for greatness, especially if it summons nostalgia for Spielberg's beloved '70s/'80s output. Don't give away that "Rocket Poppeteers" t-shirt just yet... at least wait until June 10th, when the film is slated to hit theaters.
Hot Game Sequels Go Deeper and Darker
Two of the most anticipated games on the calendar are sequels: coming January 25th is the follow-up to the splattery hit Dead Space, introducing a multiplayer option that has fans drooling. The storyline of Dead Space 2 takes place on Saturn station "The Sprawl," where the Necromorph virus is taking hold, and Isaac Clarke returns - though somehow affected by alien artifact "The Marker." Batman's also returning for Arkham City, the even darker sequel to Arkham Asylum; the plot this time involves all of Gotham's criminals transferred to a controlled urban perimeter (a concept clearly borrowed from Escape From New York), where Batman must rescue Catwoman from Two-Face. It also adds multiplayer, plus new/upgraded gadgets, and deep mods to detective mode. This one's slated for a Fall release, with solid date to be announced shortly.
Welcome Back to Alice's "Nightmare"
Not only has it been more than 35 years since Alice released the concept album Welcome to My Nightmare - which most fans consider his masterpiece - nearly every song on that record has featured in the shock-rocker's stage show ever since, and hardly a single one seems dated. When Alice announced in the spring that he's re-teaming with producer Bob Ezrin (a frequent collaborator on many of Alice's classic works) to write and record a sequel to Nightmare, there was much rejoicing. It's not an idle rumor either; earlier this year during his weekly radio show, Alice revealed he's written over a dozen songs already. The release date for Welcome to My Nightmare II (previously titled The Night Shift) is not set, but we've got our fingers crossed...