Entries by Nick Banks

‘The Turning’ Turns Off Fans and Critics Alike; Finishes in Sixth Place at Weekend Box Office

If January’s horror releases are any indication of what the rest of the year will look like, fans may be in for a “scary bad” New Year!

January’s latest disaster came in the form of DreamWorks/Universal’s PG-13 The Turning, which effectively “turned away” ticket buyers this weekend, finishing in sixth place with an estimated $6.6 million in sales.

The long-delayed horror film (originally scheduled to be released on February 22, 2019) has the the dubious distinction of earning an F from Cinemascore, just a few weeks after The Grudge remake earned the same rare grade from viewers.  Only 20 films since 1979 have been graded F by opening night audiences, and the other metrics associated with The Turning seem to support this assessment.  Critics and fans agree that The Turning is one to turn off, giving the picture an identical 12% score on Rotten Tomatoes (Tomatometer and Audience Score). read more read more

‘Tigers Are Not Afraid’ Director Issa Lopez’s Next Project Will Be Searchlight’s ‘Lost Souls’

Issa López received plenty of attention in 2019 for her breakout film Tigers Are Not Afraid.  According to an exclsuive report from Deadline, it appears that the director has found her follow-up project: an adaptation of the Matthew Baker short story Lost Souls.

Lopez will both write and direct Lost Souls, which is “…set in a world in which some babies are born without souls. A young expectant mother is sent to an unusual wellness center in the desert, with the hopes that it will improve her chances of delivering a healthy baby.” read more read more

Rodo Sayagues to Direct ‘Don’t Breathe’ Sequel

While director Fede Alvarez will not return for the sequel to Don’t Breathe, he did find a replacement that he knows and trusts.

Rodo Sayagues, the co-writer (along with Alvarez) of 2016’s Don’t Breathe and 2013’s Evil Dead remake, will make his directorial debut with the sequel, which will begin production in April.  Sayagues is also listed as co-writer of Don’t Breathe 2.

Stephen Lang will reprise his role as the Blind Man and The Hollywood Reporter describes the few plot details, and it appears that the new film will be “…set several years after the home invasion of the first movie, with the Blind Man living in quiet solace…until his past sins catch up to him.” read more read more

Dark Horse Comics Announces ‘Alien: The Original Screenplay’ Adaptation

Following on the heels of Dark Horse Comics adaptation of William Gibson’s unproduced Alien 3 script, Dark Horse (along with Twentieth Century Fox) returns to the Alien film series with a new series based on Dan O’Bannon’s original screenplay.

Alien: The Original Screenplay, written by Cristiano Seixas with art by Guilherme Balbi (Predators, Superboy), examines “…an alternate line of events initially conceived by Dan O’Bannon before it became the Alien motion picture manuscript.  En route to back to Earth, the crew of the starship Snark intercepts an alien transmission. Their investigation leads them to a desolate planetoid, a crashed alien spacecraft, and a pyramidic structure of unknown origin. Then the terror begins . . .” read more read more

Horror News Network’s Ten Best Horror Movies of 2019

Welcome to Horror News Network’s Ten Best Horror Movies of 2019, a series where our staff writers offer their top three picks of the year, which are then calculated using the data gathered to compile a ranked ultimate top ten list of 2019.  Each entry below contains excerpts from the staff members who included each film in their personal top three individual picks.  Some of the choices were clear cut, and some ties had to be broken, but what you have before you represents many of the best horror films of the year. read more read more

‘Underwater’ Sinks Into Seventh Place at Weekend Box Office; ‘The Grudge’ Drops Out of Top Ten in Second Week

The second week of the new year delivers another dud at the box office for horror fans in the form of the Aliens-esque Underwater.  The Kristen Stewart headliner finished below sea-level, in seventh place, with an estimated take seven million dollars at the box office.

The metrics for Underwater weren’t good, earning a C from Cinemascore pollsters, but critics over at Rotten Tomatoes gave the film a decent 53% (and audiences gave it a higher 63%).   With a production budget in the $50 million range, Underwater will have a hard time staying afloat, even when international box office is considered. read more read more

Horror News Network’s Best Horror Movies of 2019: Nick’s Top 3 Picks

Welcome back to Horror News Network’s Best Horror Movies of 2019, a series where our staff writers declare their top three picks of the year and use the data to compile an ultimate top ten list of 2019. Be on the lookout for a new “Top 3” list from an HNN writer every day in early January, and stay tuned for our ultimate list at the end of the series!

Nick’s Top Three Picks of 2019

#1: Midsommar 

Ari Aster’s follow up to the gut wrenching Hereditary proved to be another uncomfortable and devastating film, and effectively avoided “the sophomore slump” that plagues young filmmakers.  Shifting his sights to folklore and pagan ritual, Aster brought horror into the sun with gruesome sights as well as the slow burn (get it?) of a burgeoning trip into madness. read more read more

Fans Hold a ‘Grudge’ Against New Sony Film at Box Office

A new year brings the promise of new beginning and a dedication to resolutions.  Some people decide to go to the gym more, eat less saturated fats, read Horror News Network more frequently, etc.  Others make even more lofty goals, such as reserving judgment about their co-workers or neighbors.

Unfortunately for Sony Pictures, horror fans had to break some of those resolutions only a few days into the new year, as it was apparent that the vast majority of people who bought tickets to see the Sam Raimi produced The Grudge had a legitimate ax to grind over the new reboot. read more read more

Horror News Network’s Winter 2020 Movie Preview

After a lackluster fall, it appears that the offerings for horror fans in the coldest months of the year will be more robust with eight films being released in the genre over the course of two months.  As usual, the choices range from recognizable re-makes (The Grudge), long-delayed releases (The Turning, Brahms: The Boy II), and some odd horror re-imaginings (Gretel and Hansel, Fantasy Island).

The Grudge (January 3):  The Sam Raimi produced remake of 2004’s The Grudge (based on 2002’s Japanese import Ju-On) arrives almost six months later than its originally scheduled June of 2019 release date.   The fact that The Grudge moved from the busy summer season to the first weekend of the new year could raise some red flags, but Sony may also have made a shrewd decision to go after a horror audience that didn’t get much attention in the fall.  Sony may also be hoping for a similar outcome to last year’s Escape Room, which surprised the industry with a strong showing at the box office (making almost $100 million world wide) which was also released in the first weekend in January. read more read more

‘Kindred Spirits’ Amy Bruni and Adam Berry: The Horror News Network Interview

Amy Bruni and Adam Berry are no strangers to viewers of paranormal reality programming.  Bruni and Berry have been investigating ghosts, spirits, and demons for more than a decade, both on the seminal Ghost Hunters and their own program, Kindred Spirits, which is about to enter its fourth seasonBruni, Berry, and renowned psychic Chip Coffey return to the Travel Network with 13 new episodes beginning on Friday January 3 at 9:00 p.m. and each episode features  a variety of well-known locations as well as some spooky, hidden gems. read more read more