Back in 2014 I reported that the Motion Picture Corporation of America (MPCA) was looking to reboot Stan Winston’s 1988 directorial debut Pumpkinhead—fast forward two years and we finally have an update on the remake thanks to Saw executive producer Peter Block, who shares some promising words. While Pumpkinhead itself is one of the most underrated horror movies to come out of the ’80s—it’s a genuinely fun, atmospheric monster movie—the sequels it spawned have to be some of the worst movies in any franchise ever. The bar is set pretty fucking low, guys.
In a recent interview, Block shared some details on the remake and his approach to Winston’s classic, pointing out that it’s not going to be a shot-for-shot remake, but instead an expanded version of the original.
“There is a similarity of theme and a similarity of story. There’s a lot of Easter eggs for people who know the original — iconic shots and iconic lines that we’re going to use. But we’ve enhanced the setting, and we’ve expanded the characters somewhat, to give it a different kind of experience.”
The best remakes (in my opinion) are the ones that take a concept and spin it in such a way that make it feel unique, while still holding onto the spirit of the original, and it sounds like Block is doing exactly that with Pumpkinhead. It’s a fascinating world, grounded by a terrifying monster, so I love the idea of them expanding that universe and giving us a new perspective on the classic. But even then, the movie will only ever be as good as its monster, and we all shared the same concern: will it be practical effects or a CGI turd?
“I am a big proponent of practical effects. That was the great thing about the original. A lot of the films I still respond to most today, it’s because of the practical effects. We think that it’s going to be a nice slow reveal, lots of scares and lots of action in the beginning, and a great creature in the end, which everybody should be able to look at and say, ‘Oh, that’s Pumpkinhead!’ It’s not like you’re all of a sudden going to find that it’s some amorphous, nebulous, CGI wispy thing. You’re going to know it came from the Pumpkinhead family lineage.”
While we’re still a ways out from seeing the film (they plan to shoot early next year), we now have a reason to actually be excited about this thing, which might not actually suck after all.