If there’s one film which genre fans have been up in arms about being remade it would be John Carpenter’s The Thing. It’s one of those films which just continues to gain a loyal and zealous following despite being a major flop in the box-office when it was first released in 1982. One way producers were able to drop the remake idea was just to set a film as a prequel to the Horror Master’s classic sci-fi horror.
Using a screenplay by Eric Heisserer (which used elements from Ronald D. Moore’s own script for a possible prequel/sequel), 2011’s The Thing will be a prequel set on the ill-fated Norwegian Antarctic Research Station. Dutch-filmmaker Matthijs van Heijningen, Jr. will be doing the directing duties with Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Joel Edgerton and Ulrich Thomsen leading a cast half of which are Norwegian.
The film has been in production since March 2010 and was suppose to have a 2010 October release date. Problems either with the film’s post-production or just problems within Universal Pictures shelved the film for almost a year.
The Thing definitely looks to use Carpenter’s Steadicam and minimalist-style and the trailer shows scenes that seemed lifted right out of Carpenter’s own film. Maybe it was how the trailer was cut, but it also seemed to have more jump-scares than the ’82 classic. Some people will never accept this film even without seeing the final product. I, who consider Carpenter’s film one of the best films ever made in that era, will give this film a look-see before making a final judgement. I thought remaking Dawn of the Dead was going to be a disaster, but that film more than lived it to it’s predecessor and was very good on its own merits. I hope Matthijs van Heijningen, Jr.’s prequel also does just as well.
The Thing is set to have an October 14, 2011 release date.