Although I am part of Generation X, Hellraiser escaped me. Maybe Pinhead’s visage was too scary for me as a teen. That said, the new Hellraiser, directed by David Bruckner (The Night House) was part of the Huluween press day and I obliged. This version absolutely worked for me, and I shared that sentiment with actor Adam Faison to start the interview.
Hellraiser centers on Riley (Odessa A’zion), a young woman whose life takes a turn for the worse after she seals an ancient puzzle box. This item summons the supernatural beings the Cenobites, and they ultimately wreak havoc on Riley and her loved ones. Brandon Flynn plays her brother Matt and Adam Faison is Colin, Matt’s understandably concerned boyfriend.
The feature premieres on Hulu October 7. Below is my Q&A with Adam Faison.
What is it like to promote a movie which, in my opinion, is pretty awesome?
Adam Faison: It makes me feel really good that you feel it’s awesome too. We sit with it. We do this thing and we hope that it’s good. You hope that people enjoy it too.
(David) Bruckner is such a freaking auteur. Seeing The Night House and The Ritual – he’s just really great. I’m really glad you enjoyed it. I had such a good time it. I’m a big horror fan and it was kind of a dream of mine to be able to be in a world like this. And also something that is sacred IP (intellectual property).
David did a really great job, not only from taking from original iterations of this movie but mostly like the novella. And he put his own spin on it. So I felt very honored to be a part of it.
I have not seen the original Hellraiser and after watching this version, I am eager to go back. Will it be a great experience for fans of this movie to go watch the first one?
Adam Faison: I think so. But what is kind of cool is it invites new viewers into (the world). Because the main protagonist starts off dealing with addiction and recovery. So she brings in a little carrot into people who are looking for more of a character driven story.
Then it sort of takes a dovetail once she finds the box and then it opens up everything. It really does start with the human aspect of this girl trying to deal with living with us and these new rules. It’s kind of a nice way for people to come in who have never seen (Hellraiser). We are not trying to remake anything that Clive Barker did before. It’s very much we’re starting with a new story and inviting people in that have never seen it.
After, hopefully people will be excited enough to go back and watch, especially the original. Because those first two influenced a lot with what Brucker was trying to go for.
I appreciated how there was not a ton of backstory and exposition in this movie. The characters are simply trying to survive, and there is no time to chat to their hearts content.
Adam Faison: We talked a lot about this and (David Brucker said), “I don’t want this to be one of those movies where we get stuck in exposition and I would have to explain.” He wanted to explain just enough but (Bruckner) really wanted to get into the meat of it.
He likes people asking questions so there is not always going to be answers in this which I think is also exciting because it also keeps it open and hopefully one day if there is another iteration or a sequel . . . There is a huge push right now for over explaining things or dumbing it down for audiences, but I feel like we have to hold (Hellraiser) to a higher standard.
Can you name one of your favorite horror movies?
Adam Faison: I would say 28 Days Later is probably like one of the most terrifying movies to me because they do such a good job. Maybe similarly to this where they do such a great job at developing those characters in such a short amount of time. And you are rooting for them.
Probably the most terrifying part of that movie might be when Cillian Murphy wakes up and the entire hospital is abandoned and there is no one on the streets. He is just walking around and is wondering what has happened. There is not a soul on the streets.
There is something terrifying about the absence of people and humanity. And what is the next step in that. The original It they do that a lot with the disappearance of the kids. Sort of like the horrifying nature of waking up and everybody has just disappeared. It’s terrifying.
Check out my interview with Huluween Dragstravaganza’s Ginger Minj and Manila Luzon:
What makes David Bruckner a unique filmmaker?
Adam Faison: Bruckner will get down in the weeds with you. He’s not afraid – 9th hour or whatever. Every scene, he is so specific and he knows where everything is going.
Every moment was specific, even down to a scream. I really appreciated him for that. (smiles) He would just get down in there with us so I appreciated him for that. He’s a really great guy.
Thank you Adam for your time. Loved the movie and hope it does well!
I hope so too. Thank you Greg for saying that.