I recently had the pleasure of talking to Russell Mulcahy, best known to most of us as the director of Highlander and, more recently, Resident Evil: Extinction. The full interview will be posted the week before his latest film, Give ‘em Hell Malone, is released on DVD in the UK on 17th May. But as part of the interview I had the opportunity to ask him about the forthcoming Teen Wolf remake, which he’s directing for MTV.
As a big fan of the original film (and almost everything else in the 80s), I had to ask him how he felt about tackling such a sacred property, informing him that there were a lot of worried people out there. Before I could finish my question he was very keen to defend what he was doing and give us an idea of the direction he is taking with it, so here is his response:
“I’ve heard this, I haven’t read it, but I’ve heard this and let me assure you – I mean we are not screwing around with the obviously very much beloved 80s Michael J. Fox classic, we are not doing that.
Obviously it’s inspired by it, but the new MTV Teen Wolf takes out a totally different slant, taking more of the slant of The Lost Boys, so to speak. It still has humour, but it’s basically got horror and humour. The humour is in the characters and the real situations and the teenagers, it’s very real and not played for any obvious laughs – they come from the situation.
So there is definitely humour and horror, we really, really wanted to go for that and also the reality. Also it’s obviously pumped up with not only a good scary score, but it’s also pumped up with great music…”
As with anything the proof is in the pudding, but it was strange hearing The Lost Boys mentioned as a comparison on the same day that poor Corey Haim died. It makes sense for Russell Mulcahy to use that as a specific example, with his music video work in the 80s being somewhat spectacular (Queen’s It’s a Kind of Magic and Duran Duran’s Wild Boys, to name but two), so I sincerely hope he’s re-embracing his origins.
After all, a large part of Highlander’s strength was in its integral use of Queen’s music, so you never know.
Either way, whether we like it or not (as with any remake) it’s done now, so all we can do is hope for the best…