With the news earlier this week of Corey Stoll being cast as the lead in GdT , Hogan,and Cuse’s FX series THE STRAIN…Comes news of ”LOST” vet Keven Durand joining the cast.
Durand will play Vasily Fet, a second-generation Ukrainian-American and rat exterminator by trade who enthusiastically joins the war against the vampires. Under the mentorship of a wise vampire hunter from Eastern Europe, Fet discovers his formerly solitary life now has meaning.
The role reunites Durand with former Lostshowrunner Cuse, who will serve in the same capacity should the pilot be ordered to series. Del Toro and Hogan will co-write the pilot with the former set to direct the FX Productions vehicle.
House Of Cards‘Corey Stoll has been tapped as the lead of FX‘s high-profile drama projectThe Strain, from filmmakerGuillermo del Toro and veteran showrunner Carlton Cuse (Lost, Bates Motel). The Strain, an adaptation of del Toro’s vampire novel trilogy, formally has a pilot order, but FX president John Landgraf has indicated it is being eyed for a series order. The project already has a full writing staff in place churning out scripts, and I hear FX has committed $500,000 to creature creation.
Del Toro will direct the pilot from a script he co-wrote with Chuck Hogan, who also co-authored the books with del Toro. Cuse, who helped develop the adaptation, executive produces alongside del Toro and will serve as showrunner, overseeing the potential series with del Toro. Hogan and del Toro’s longtime manager/producing partner Gary Ungar also serve as exec producers of the project, produced by FX Prods.
The Strain is a high-concept thriller that tells the story of Dr. Ephraim Goodweather (Stoll), the head of the Centers for Disease Control Canary Team in New York City. He and his team are called upon to investigate a mysterious viral outbreak with hallmarks of an ancient and evil strain of vampirism. As the strain spreads, Eph, his team and an assembly of everyday New Yorkers, wage war for the fate of humanity itself. “To me, having the right lead for The Strain series was perhaps the most important creative task,” said del Toro. “To be able to secure the perfect actor in Corey Stoll sets the project on the right track. To embody a character like Ephraim Goodweather — who transitions through every emotion and situation imaginable, and which anchors the narrative of the series — requires amazing talent and craft. Corey has both in spades as he has demonstrated it over and over again.”
Stoll has been a hot commodity since his breakout starring role on NBC’s Law & Order: LA. This year, he has drawn attention for his roles in the Netflix seriesHouse Of Cards and the Sundance entry COG. He was among the most sought-after actors this broadcast pilot season, fielding multiple offers. Stoll, repped by UTA and Suskin Management, is probably best known on the feature side for his turn as Ernest Hemingway in Midnight In Paris. He just wrapped the indie The Glass Chin and recently was cast in This Is Where I Leave You and The Good Lie.
After months of quietly twiddling our thumbs will Guillermo worked on post for PACIFIC RIM (“Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain!”) – we finally get some big news: THE STRAIN is heading to F/X.
Deadline.com has a great article with all the details, and what we learn is that F/X has ordered a pilot to be co-written, directed and executive produced by GDT himself. Also writing, of course, will be THE STRAIN series co-author Chuck Hogan. Running the show will be LOST’S co-runner Carlton Cuse.
THE STRAIN comes full circle, since years ago Guillermo thought of bringing it to Fox television. When that didn’t go down, he asked Hogan to help him write a book trilogy.
The series incredible success, along with the popularity of shows like THE WALKING DEAD and AMERICAN HORROR STORY, led Guillermo’s chilling vampire story back to television.
GDT and F/X both imagine this show as a having a limited run for about three to five seasons, with Guillermo directing as many episodes as he can.
GDT also headed to HBO
Along with THE STRAIN, the HULK series at ABC, Guillermo will now also be producing Corinne May Botz’s HBO drama NUTSHELL STUDIES. According to the Hollywood Reporter, the 1950′s period drama will feature a “small-town housewife” solving brutal crimes. This show, I believe, fits right in to Guillermo’s love of Hitchcock and crime noir.
Also, check out this link to read about the REAL “Nutshell Studies” – could this be the basis for the series?
MAMA trailer appears online
And Guillermo’s latest producing effort, MAMA, now has a trailer online. GDT has a strong track record with producing some great chillers, including JULIA’S EYES, THE ORPHANAGE and SPLICE. MAMA looks to be another strong edition to Guillermo’s producing credits. Watch below:
PACIFIC RIM to be post-converted to 3D
Warner Bros has announced that they will post-convert Guillermo’s blockbuster epic PACIFIC RIM into 3D. Depending on who you are, you will either celebrate or cringe. After all, Guillermo never intended the film to be 3D, and converting it afterwards seems to be another example of the studio messing with G’s art. But no worries – the film will be shown in its true 2D form, and Guillermo has not shown any concern on our message boards, saying that post is going well. And hey, if you are a real GDT fan, why not pay for it twice and see which version you like better? I’m sure Guillermo would welcome the idea!
HOBBIT Trailer 2 Released
Even though Guillermo’s contributions to THE HOBBIT project have largely been kept silent and swept under the rug, I would be remiss if I didn’t post the latest trailer. What do you think? Do some GDT elements still remain? I doubt you will see anything in the way of design, direction or cinematography – but maybe you can detect his words…or his sense of humor. He is still listed as co-writer of the screenplay. What do you think?
Kung Fu Panda 3
And Po is coming back for number 3 – and Guillermo will once again serve as executive producer. Look for this one in March of 2016.
It is that time of year again – the great Pilgrimage to San Diego for all things movies, monsters and comics. And, as always, it is one of your best opportunities to meet Guillermo and get some sweet GDT swag! So what is in store for you this year? Lots of PACIFIC RIM, of course, but there are other surprises in store for you as well at SDCC! Find out in DTF’s official Comic Con preview!!!
BLADE II BLU-RAY AND PALE MAN SIGNING AT GENTLE GIANT (Friday)
Friday is your first opportunity to get Guillermo’s autograph, and also some nice GDT merch. At the Gentle Giant booth on Friday at 1-2:30, GDT will be signing the new Blade II Blu-ray and the Gentle Giant Pale Man statue. The Blade 2 blu-ray features a comic con exclusive Reaper bust – only 500 sets available (cost: $99). To read a review of the BluRay, click here. (The Blu-Ray is available in stores now, but not the Reaper bust – it is exclusive to Comic Con).
The Pale Man statue (from Pan’s Labyrinth) is priced at $225, with only 300 available. See picture below:
In addition to getting Guillermo’s autograph, you can also get the autograph of the Pale Man himself, Doug Jones, at the Gentle Giant booth on these dates: Friday 11am-Noon, and Saturday, 11am – 1pm.
Word of advice from our SDCC veteran and fellow DTF fan – buy the BluRay and the Pale Man statue early on Friday – just in case (you never know if they might sell out during the signing).
PACIFIC RIM (Saturday)
If you are a GDT fan, this is the one event you HAVE to make: the Legendary Pictures Preview of PACIFIC RIM, scheduled for Saturday, July 14th from 2:30 – 5:00pm at Hall H. GDT will be there for a special preview, and, although I have no official knowledge of the presentation, I would be SHOCKED if he wasn’t bringing some nice clips to share. Two things – 1) make sure you get in line early, and 2) if you are bringing little ones, bring some ear muffs. Guillermo’s Comic Con presentations are legendary for “colorful” language.
Also, you will definitely want to get your hands on the exclusive Comic Con PACIFIC RIM poster, shown below!!
THE STRAIN (Sunday)
Guillermo will signing copies of the THE STRAIN graphic novel at the Dark Horse comics booth on Sunday at 1:00pm. It is listed as a “ticketed” event, so check in early with the Dark Horse booth to get details.
The San Diego Comic Con is a great opportunity to meet Guillermo, and he always leaves a positive impression with his fans. What can you say? He’s just a great guy, as you will find out. But for those who can’t make it, or for those who would like a little preview of what to expect, here is some great historical moments from past GDT appearances in San Diego:
You can now pre-order THE NIGHT ETERNAL, the final chapter in THE STRAIN series on Amazon! Also, check out the nice review from horror master Stephen King – it left our friend Guillermo feeling “thin and happy.” Here is a quote:
The action is non-stop, and the fantasy element is anchored in enough satisfying detail to make it believable. All the New York landmarks, such as Central Park’s Belvedere Castle and The Cloisters, are real. And while you’re discovering such essential vampire facts as the undead’s inability to cross running water without human help, you’ll also find out that the stone lions outside the New York Public Library have names: Patience and Fortitude. Plus, come on, admit it—there’s something about seeing vampires massing for an attack in a Wendy’s parking lot that makes them more real. The devil’s in the details, and this is one devilishly good read full of satisfying scares.
Well, an interesting first day at SDCC, it appears. Although I could not attend this year, I am able to scan the various news reports online for GDT news – and here is what I have found:
As was reported on our forums, Guillermo Del Toro will be working with Dark Horse to release a comic book version of THE STRAIN, the trilogy of novels written by GDT and Chuck Hogan. The comic will be written by David Lapham (Stray Bullets), with art by Mike Huddleston (MK Ultra). Variety reports that the series is set for publication on December 14th. Three paperback graphic novels will be released in the fall of 2012. Each book will be 32 pages, with each novella in the trilogy getting an 8 issue series. GDT says he will “supervise everything”, giving his opinion on the art, the covers and screenplays. (Artwork below taken from Bleeding Cool).
Guillermo was supposed to attend the announcement of the Dark Horse STRAIN project last night, but it appears he was unable to attend because of a back injury. I will post more information as I get it, and will find out if he will be attending his other SDCC commitments.
DON’T BE AFRAID OF THE DARK has a new official website at http://www.dontbeafraidofthedark.com/. You can lookup showtimes now and order tickets through the site. It is a pretty cool site that lets you “explore” the DARK mansion and unlock clues.
If you were paying attention to our Twitter account, @deltorofilms, we informed you that Digital Spy was going to do a Twitter Q&A with GDT. Lucky for us, they filmed the whole thing!
Topics of note:
Next year, Palace Press will be releasing a “big coffee table book” containing all his diary contents. GDT said it will be a “big, expensive, heavy book” that will show pages from his famous journal with explanations on the side. He also said there will be a limited edition facsimile of the diaries available.
GDT says the MIMIC director’s cut DVD is still in limbo, and will be until Miramax is purchased. He says he is “super happy” with the director’s cut. “It is a better movie, I think it is more understandable, a bit more cohesive. I love the movie. I hope it gets released because then I can say I like all my movies!”
Here is a great video interview with Guillermo where he talks about his influences for creating THE STRAIN trilogy’s vampire mythology. He gives recommended reading, and also the video shows some great sketches from his famous notebook.
Guillermo gets some nice laughs, talks about his lazy cat – then drops a bomb, saying he is working on a TV project with David Eicke, the Executive producer and writer for the great BATTLESTAR GALACTICA TV series!