Pulp Fiction writers Quentin Tarantino and Roger Avary reunite for a podcast; The Halloween Ends trailer is AARP-approved; the Fantasia Film Festival film Sissy is a Millennial horror story; a deep-dive into the creation of House of the Dragon, a prequel for Game of Thrones. All in today’s Movie News Rundown.
But First: Our list of the 25 Coolest Film Festivals in the world will be out tomorrow at 9 a.m. PT/noon ET.
Now Underway: Margeaux Sippell has this update on the Indy Shorts festival now underway in Indianapolis, which will feature a tribute to Colman Domingo and films featuring Amanda Seyfried, Kevin Bacon, and more.
Greetings From Fantasia! I’m writing this from beautiful Montreal, where the bike lanes are vast, the bagels are sweet, and the Fantasia Film Festival is in full glorious swing. I’m seeing great films and meeting brilliant filmmakers, about whom I’ll be writing in the coming days.
Any Recos? Assuredly yes. One of the best films so far has been the Australian horror comedy Sissy, about an influencer who goes on a bachelorette party weekend that turns out to be at the home of her childhood bully. Aisha Dee (The Bold Type) really goes for it as Cecilia (formerly Sissy), as does Hannah Barlow as her soon-to-be married childhood best friend. Barlow co-wrote and co-directed the film with spouse Kane Senes.
Speaking of Horror Duos: The new trailer is also out for Halloween Ends, David Gordon Green’s end to the trilogy that picked up where John Carpenter and Debra Hill’s 1978 Halloween left off and ignores pretty much everything else. This one features what promises to be the final face-off between Michael Myers and Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis). He’d be about 65 now, and she’d be about 61, but judging from their fighting prowess, no arthritis has set in.
Today I Learned: Debra Hill, who produced the original Halloween and co-wrote it with her then-partner, John Carpenter, grew up in the lovely town of Haddonfield, New Jersey, a pleasant Philadelphia suburb. The main setting for the Halloween films, of course, is Haddonfield, Illinois.
Speaking of John Carpenter: His 1974 film Dark Star is one subject of the first episode of The Video Archives Podcast With Quentin Tarantino and Roger Avary. The podcast reunites the Oscar winning Pulp Fiction co-screenwriters and former employees of the Video Archives video rental store in L.A.’s beautiful South Bay, my homeland. They also talk about Cocaine Cowboys, featuring Jack Palance and Andy Warhol. It’s the true story of a rock band on the brink of stardom and a bag of the purest ‘caine.
The War of the Five Pitches: The Hollywood Reporter‘s James Hibberd has a very, multi-part deep dive into HBO’s quest to make a Game of Thrones prequel. Creatives and HBO executives culled George R.R. Martin’s books for source material, coming up with several contenders, resulting in what internet snarkeroos dubbed The War of the Five Pitches. One pitch that got quite far was Bloodmoon, about which Martin had his doubts. “A cast headed by Naomi Watts was assembled,” Hibberd writes. “Massive new sets were built. A Bloodmoon pilot was shot for a whopping $30 million to $35 million. And the result was locked away in a dungeon so deep that even Martin has never been allowed to see it.”
So, How’d That Work Out? HBO finally settled on House of the Dragon, which preliminarily looks an awful lot like the original Game of Thrones.
Main Image: Michael Myers and Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) in Halloween Ends.