A really big horror film is set to go into production in May called The Gathering, and tonight is the first I have heard of it. Fangoria caught up with director Jon Keeyes, who confirmed that both Simon Pegg and Jeffrey Combs had joined the cast which also includes Doug Bradley, Robert Englund, Udo Kier, Bill Moseley, David Naughton, Lin Shaye, Gunnar Hansen and William Sadler, among others.
The Gathering is also bringing many big iconic horror characters to the screen, including Bram Stoker, Edgar Allan Poe, The Devil, H.P. Lovecraft and Mary Shelley.
“We’ve got Simon Pegg attached to it now. He’s going to play the devil, and because of that, we’ve suddenly got a whole lot of interest in The Gathering again, and it’s starting to really push forward,” said Keeyes. “We’ve [also] got Jeffrey Combs playing Edgar Allan Poe (pictured below). David Naughton is playing H.P. Lovecraft, Doug Bradley is playing Bram Stoker, and for Mary Shelley we’ve got a couple of major female names who have said they’d like to do it, but we’re going to wait and see what happens once the financing lands. And then we’ve got Udo Kier, Clint Howard, Robert Englund, Lin Shaye, Ashley Laurence, Gunnar Hansen, Bill Moseley, Debbie Rochon, and William Sadler committed to do the movie—it’s a huge cast.”
So what exactly is The Gathering?
“On Halloween night the devil brings together Mary Shelley, H.P. Lovecraft, Bram Stoker, and Edgar Allan Poe in purgatory to tell their best untold tales, the idea being that whoever has the best story of the night gets to leave purgatory forever. That’s the framing device around all the anthology stories within the film.”
Keeyes then revealed the stories the horror writers would be telling in the film:
“We’ve tried to put a spin on the essence of the stories they’re most well known for. So Bram Stoker tells a vampire tale, but it’s not about Dracula. H.P. Lovecraft’s story is sort of Re-Animator-esque, set in the Victorian era. We’ve approached it with the idea of what these writers would be like all these years since they died. They’ve got a slightly modern sensibility, as if they’ve kept up with the changing times while they’ve been in purgatory, while still holding on to the personalities and nuances they would have had in the eras they lived in. So there’s a whole lot of bickering and rivalry.”
“One of the things I love about The Gathering is that we cover all the horror subgenres—vampires, werewolves, zombies, ghosts, slashers—within our stories, but in the framing segments with the devil and the writers, there’s a real comedic-horror element going on. They’re taking jabs at each other, and they each have a bit of magic they get to play with since they’re undead, so a lot of fun stuff happens with that.”
Keeyes also revealed that Vincent J. Guastini (THE DEVIL’S CARNIVAL, CABIN FEVER: PATIENT ZERO) will be handling the makeup FX for THE GATHERING, which is targeting a May start date.
Expect plenty more on this as it develops.