Filmmaker Paul W.S. Anderson is an unsung hero of cinema, an auteur with the ability to seamlessly blend the most compelling elements of horror and sci-fi into films palatable enough for mainstream audiences yet subversive enough for those on the more extreme end of the spectrum. Yesterday, his unique talents were on full display as a trailer for the upcoming YouTube series Origin hit the crowds at Comic-Con like an atom bomb!
"In Origin...We meet a group of troubled passengers as they wake up on a damaged spaceship abandoned in deep space. Each having left behind a dark past in search of a fresh start on a newly colonized planet, they're desperate to survive at all costs. But as their terrifying situation spirals into paranoia, they come to realize that the greatest threat to their dream of starting over - and indeed their lives - might actually be within their midst..."
For the uninitiated, Anderson became a demigod among horror aficionados following the release of Event Horizon in 1997. Still held in extremely high regard over two decades later, the film was lauded for it's claustrophobic intensity while blending hard sci-fi with metaphysical/supernatural horrors. In a nutshell: Alien meets Hellraiser. The film's status and history have both reached legendary proportions; over an hour of excised footage was destroyed, as Event Horizon was produced in a pre-DVD era where deleted scenes, alternate endings, and Director's Cuts were rare anomalies.
Anderson is perhaps best-known to sci-fi and action movie fans for his 6-part Resident Evil franchise featuring Milla Jovovich (who became his wife in 2009). Other notable feathers in his cap include Mortal Kombat, AVP: Alien vs Predator, and Death Race.
Anderson amped-up an already enthusiastic crowd at Comic-Con yesterday, where a 12-minute advanced preview of Origin was shared along with the jaw-dropping trailer.
"It's not just a TV show based on a spaceship. Sixty percent is on board the origin... but also 40 percent of the show dives into one character's backstory, to show how they messed up their lives so badly. That was very very exciting for me, because you're getting to do two shows. [This is] the first time I've been in deep space since I did a movie Event Horizon [crowd cheers], and I never really wanted to go out into deep space again because I was really happy with that movie. Then I read [creator] Mika Watkins' script and she inspired me to go back into space."
Origin marks a return to episodic serials for the first time for the filmmaker since he penned several episodes of the comedy/drama El C.I.D. between 1990 and 1992. The 10-epidoe series (of which Anderson is directing the first 2) will premiere on YouTube this fall and stars Tom Felton (best known for playing Draco Malfoy in the Harry Potter films) and Natalia Tena (another Harry Potter alum who portrayed Nymphadora Tonks). Other prominent members of the ensemble cast include Philipp Christopher, Nora Arnezeder, Belén Fabra, and Madalyn Horcher.
The trailer is nothing short of thrilling; in addition to Anderson's trademark aesthetic, there are echoes of classic and modern horror and sci-fi favorites, from Alien to Pandorum, from The Thing to Prometheus, from The Matrix to Elysium. And at the core of it all is a compelling mystery certain to keep viewers coming back for more. This news first appeared on io9.