MGM returning to The Town That Dreaded Sundown


Definitely Not 40
Apr 4, 2004
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Ryan Murphy and Jason Blum Teaming Up for MGM's Remake of 'The Town That Dreaded Sundown'
9:20 PM PST 1/17/2013 by Borys Kit, Lesley Goldberg

Alfonso Gomez-Rejon is in negotiations to direct the movie, which already has a script by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, the playwright who wrote MGM’s upcoming remake of "Carrie."

Ryan Murphy and Jason Blum are teaming up for the remake of MGM’s cult-classic horror pic The Town That Dreaded Sundown.

Alfonso Gomez-Rejon is in negotiations to direct the movie, which already has a script by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, the playwright who wrote MGM’s upcoming remake of Carrie.

Sundown, released in 1976, was in many ways a precursor to the found-footage phenomenon that stalks the horror genre today. The movie, directed by Charles B. Pierce, fictionally tells in documentary style, complete with a voice-over, "true events" that occurred in and around Texarkana in 1946.

Over a period of months, a serial killer dubbed the Phantom Killer murdered several people, throwing communities into fear. He was never caught.

MGM is aiming to produce the remake on a low budget and keep the original's cinema verite style. The remake is said to have horror-movie tones and elements of a procedural in the vein of David Fincher’s Zodiac. The project is eyeing a spring start and had been operating under a veil of secrecy until Murphy revealed certain details during a press screening of the second season finale for the horror show he co-created, American Horror Story.

Murphy said that while working on his next directorial project, Normal Heart, with Blum, the two began a dialogue about horror movies. Blum is considered a maestro of the low-budget found-footage genre, with credits such as the Paranormal Activity franchise.

“The movie I was the most freaked out by as a child was this movie that no one ever saw called The Town That Dreaded Sundown,” said Murphy during the Q&A. “I had just started to babysit my brother, and the ads for that movie would come on and I'd get freaked out. I went to (Blum) with this and MGM was gracious enough to let us do it with them. So we're doing a modern-day version remake, weird meta thing with (it).”

Gomez-Rejon is an in-demand second unit director who has worked on movies such as Babel and Argo. He did second unit on Murphy’s feature Eat Pray Love, which led to him working as a director on Murphy’s Glee TV show. That put him on the path to direct episodes of American Horror Story.

Gomez-Rejon is repped by WME and Kleinberg Lopez.

Never seen the original, but it sounds interesting. Most intrigued by the choice of director. His episodes of AHS have been incredible. I could see him having quite a career ahead of him.

Trailer of the original:
Sounds cool.

Guess I'll have to add the original movie to my queue.
Hearing about it being in the same vein as Fincher's Zodiac is quite pleasing. :up:
This is a perfect movie to remake. The original is a sort of proto-slasher (the killer in this one predates Friday the 13th part 2's tater-sack killer look) and it has some effective moments (including one of the most bizarre kills I've seen in one these types of movies), but the phony docudrama approach doesn't always work and the tone is all over the place, in particular some would be broad comedy that does not work at all. In a lot of ways it's very similar to Charles B Pierce's other horror movie, The Legend of Boggy Creek, in that it ranges from working very well one minute to nearly unwatchable the next (though Town That Dreaded Sundown is overall the more successful of the two).

With the right approach, this could make for a very effective creep-fest, in tone somewhere between Zodiac and a slasher movie. Hopes are up for this one.
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Addison Timlin Lands Lead In ‘The Town That Dreaded Sundown’

EXCLUSIVE: The Californication and Zero Hour actress is set to star in MGM‘s horror remake, which puts a modern meta twist on the original. Pic takes place in Texarkana, site of the 1946 “Moonlight Murders” that inspired the 1976 cult pic The Town That Dreaded Sundown. Addison Timlin plays Jami, a girl who survives a copycat massacre at the film’s annual tribute screening and sets out to solve the mystery of who’s recreating the unsolved Sackhead murders, using clues from her own past. Ryan Murphy is producing with Jason Blum. Alfonso Gomez-Rejon, who directed episodes of American Horror Story for Murphy, is helming. Timlin recently appeared opposite Al Pacino and Christopher Walken in Lionsgate’s Stand Up Guys and in the SXSW comedy The Bounceback. She stars as Stormy Llewellyn in the Dean Koontz adaptation Odd Thomas, out later this year. Timlin is repped by Gersh, Management 360, and Schreck Rose Dapello & Adams.

This looks like it could be genuinely scary. Looking forward to it.:up:
Looks like they might actually pull this off. I wish Netflix had the original, not seen it in many years.

Little known fact: The original theatrical poster was painted by then unknown Ralph McQuarrie

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I haven't seen the original, but have heard a few good things about it.

Trailer was good. The film looks like it was shot really well.
Just read the wiki article on the murders the film is based off of. I cant even imagine what itd be like to live in a town gripped in that kind of terror. Its stuff like this that make me want to invest in a 9mm for my dash. Gives me the wiggins.
The best thing about this remake is that Orion Pictures is back. Even the logo's the same!
I didn't know Orion revived itself as a theatrical entity. That would explain the VOD release for Sundown... it's a shame, it looks scary enough for a nationwide release.
Not a fan of the horror genre as a whole but the movies I do like in it are the oldschool slasher type flicks and this looks really good. :up:
Pierce was really good at making movies with a budget of like a quarter and a pack of bubblegum and yet somehow making them effective (mostly). It'll be interesting to see what these guys can do with more money and more modern effects.
Looks good, should be a nice honor to the original which i enjoyed for 20 years since i rented it on video.

Orion is back!
The best thing about this remake is that Orion Pictures is back. Even the logo's the same!

I got pretty excited when I saw that. Hadn't realized how long it's been since I've seen it on something new.
Not sure how long it's been available but I found this on Netflix streaming earlier tonight. Pretty darned good, too.
I saw this a couple of months back and thought it was alright.

Thing that impressed me the most was how great it looked.
I saw this not too long ago and thought it was pretty good. Not great, but good enough.
I liked it though it was kinda boring at some points.

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