Edward D. Wood, Jr.: ...and then, Dr. Vornoff falls into the pit, and his own octupus attacks and eats him. The end.
Old Man McCoy: Whew! That's quite a story.
Edward D. Wood, Jr.: Yes.
Old Man McCoy: So, uh, you made the movie, and now you wanna make it again?
Edward D. Wood, Jr.: No. We shot ten minutes of the movie, and now we're looking for completion funds.
Old Man McCoy: Oh, son, you're too vague.
Sound familiar. That's the plight of the independent horror film director circa 1955 (as told by Tim Burton of course). Edward D. Wood, Jr. makes half of Bride of the Atom (Monster) and then has to go back to the backers for money when the "financing" falls through. Have things changed all that much? No they have not. In a recent article for the Blood Sprayer I discussed some new films that had in fact been made, but were not seeing formal DVD/VoD distribution... at least in the U.S. in the best case scenario. But then we have... WORST CASE SCENARIO!
And as a reader commented on the article, Richard Raaphorst (who's name is as scary as the trailers for his movies) is doing it again. Make the trailer and hopefully make the movie. Worst Case Scenario teased us like the celluloid version of a french tickler, but never delivered,as the French would say, "la petit mort (the little death)". Just hit up the official website for Worst Case Scenario and the best you'll get is a rather charming piece of promo history. Promo DVD's sold out. No film in sight and it's been two whole years. Fans were drooling and clawing out their eyeballs a year ago. And now... there's a general malaise; a feeling of sadness. Raaphorst was unable to deliver Worst Case Scenario and of course, as the website so eloquently puts it, it had to do with money:
It's official: because we have run out of financing possibilities WORST CASE SCENARIO is 'on hold'. Having tried to raise our Nazi zombies for six years, we have to be realistic (yech!) and admit that there's not much of a chance of that happening anywhere soon. WCS is dead in the water. On the other hand, zombies have a strange way of resurfacing when you least expect them. Keep watching the beaches. May 27, 2009
A movie with this much hype and a fan base that can't wait to get their claws on this one "ran out of financing possibilities"? So which of your favorite distributors would have turned down this one had it received the financial backing to continue? Did it need "completion funds" beyond what a studio might give or did cheap cgi effected living dead kill the beast. In my mind you either blame Raaphorst for producing trailers of such visually stunning quality that no studio felt the need to produce a movie or the deep pockets are fans of money and not horror films. This is where you say, "yes, yes... you've said this all before in your Sprayer article, have you something new for us Heir Doctor?"
I have something for you that has already been reported via every major horror site on the planet, but needs to be brought up again and again so that we can help prevent Raaphorst's new endeavor from being weighted down like a witch and drowned. I'm talking about Army of Frankenstein aka Frankenstein's Army aka the best fucking trailer, promo material, website you'll have seen since Samuel L. Jackson called you on your cell phone to tell you about Snakes on a Motherfuckin' Plane!
Don't believe me? Check it out now (and then for not believing me you have to watch the Nightmare on Elm Street remake one hundred times... and yeah, I liked it, but you didn't so suck it.). Since you all will love it then I do not expect any of you will be gracing Jack Haley with your presence, but let's start the fire under the distributor's asses now.
Here are the goodies in question:
First off, I think you can guess what it's about. From the production company:
Toward the end of World War II, Russian soldiers pushing into eastern Germany stumble across a secret Nazi lab, one that has unearthed and begun experimenting with the journal of one Dr. Victor Frankenstein. The scientists have used the legendary Frankenstein's work to assemble an army of super-soldiers stitched together from the body parts of their fallen comrades -- a desperate Hitler's last ghastly ploy to escape defeat.
Mad Scientist movies do well. They are in dire need right now. The reason for WCS not being funded properly due to overcrowding in the zed market (zombie) is actually not entirely unfounded. It's a sad pathetic reality, but it's cold hard fact that every other movie has zombie in the title and frankly, most of them aren't doing well. Time to find a different sub-genre to exploit and if you say vampire... well, just don't say vampire I'm tired of threatening you. Instead, let's take some action together to help be a part of the Raaphorst's dilemma. Ghoules, ghosties... I give you...
(that's a working title... also kicking around...)
INDY FILM ROBBERS FROM OUTER SPACE):
Let's start the buzz by blogging, reviewing, facebook liking, postering, flash mobbing (all politics aside) this thing to the point where the producer and director will have the distributors knocking at their door even before its released to festival eyes.
First Objective: Post it. Your job, should you choose to accept it, is to spread the word. Banner it on your blogs. Become horror history by voting this thing into distribution (just like a certain Leslie Vernon sequel we all know and love). Since this is idea is newborn I've had little time to develop it, but we are the DIY generation. We didn't have T-shirts we liked so we made them happen. We didn't have magazines that had the content we wanted so we blogged them into existence. We make short movies, post them on the internet for contests and then make full length features with Rutger Hauer. We can make the best Nazi-ploitation film since since Dead Snow.
One of the keys to this film's success will be the re-emergence of this sub-genre of exploitation film plus the video game culture attaching themselves to the Call of Duty/Gears of War esque trailers. The key to this picture's success will take more slight more than fan support with dollars in hand. Slightly more than the distributors giving the green light; they can do that and then still shelve it or limitedly distribute it out of existence (or at least from a financial viability stand point). This movie needs a co-pilot; a wingman. Army of Frankenstein needs Rob Zombie and the Weinsteins.
Secondary objective of Plan 9 from... blah blah blah: Get Werewolf Women of the S.S. made into a full length picture ripe for distribution. It's part of the genre building experiment. Start with a director who is well known who can put the asses in the seats. Allow him to make a sure fan favorite. Get the asses in the seats and then let Army of Frankenstein ride its coat tails into stardom. This would have the added bonus of getting a new Rob Zombie, non-remake picture made and could give us back what we lost in the late 70's, mid 80's when Dyanne Thorne was queenand the Beast in Heat was your blind date.
Third objective: Buy it and get some merchandising that people can get behind. Sure, Nazi toys are going to be a difficult sell. I think that Tarantino's Inglorious Basterds showed us that we can handle a little revisionist, WWII, Nazi history. Maybe we can handle action figures too.
Cult classic hear we come!
I'm not saying that you have to do any of what I just stated above. It's a nice idea, and we all have our projects. Things we'd love to see be developed properly and projects not left to rot under foreign distro, but it's a start. If not this movie, maybe we'll all find one we can get behind, but there's a slim chance that we, the horror fans, succeed now... we can save Worse Case Scenario for tomorrow. Maybe.
-Dr. Von Terrorstein