Ahoy, squirts! Quint here with the newest word from the lips of horror-meister Clive Barker. I've been meaning to give his work a go. I was always more of a Stephen King guy, but of all the other big horror writers of the last 20 years that I tested out (from John Saul to Anne Rice) I always liked Barker's stuff the best, but I still wasn't prepared to wrap my brain around his demented worlds at that time.
Having said that, I think his imagination is a terrifying place and translates very well to screen. In terms of pure horror, some of the scariest flicks in the last 2 decades were adaptations of his work. CANDYMAN scared the living shit out of me at a time when I thought I was over that kind of thing and the first couple HELLRAISER films still freak my shit out. If the TORTURED SOULS film is anything on that level, consider me nervous, but excited!
So, I'm very much anticipating his return to film and when I get back from NZ I think it's high time I stack up all of the BOOKS OF BLOOD and read them straight through. Here's the skinny straight from a Barker-head who met the man just a day or so ago! Enjoy!!!
Last night I attended what I can only describe as a great rock concert. It was actually Clive Barker signing copies of his new novel Abarat 2: Days of Magic, Nights of War. I compare it to a great rock concert because it's like when you hear a band on a CD or on the radio and you're enough of a fan to go see them live, but then hearing them in person and getting a glimpse of what they're really like just blows you away and after the show you've become a full fledged disciple of all things that band. That's how I feel about Clive Barker after this, my first encounter with the man himself. I didn't find out about this book signing until the day it was scheduled to happen up here in Bothel, Washington so I didn't have time to prepare what I wanted to get signed or what to ask if I got the chance so I just had to wing it.I had to skip a concert called Endfest 13 with such bands as Muse, The Violent Phems and Franz Ferdinand to go to this but I am confident I made the right decision.
When me and a friend of mine whose obsessed with all things Clive Barker arrived we were kind of skeptical about celebrity book signings because we didn't want it to be just some three hour wait where a quick signature's made without even looking up at us before a publicist quickly disposes of our prescience. That's probably what happens at a Bill Clinton book signing but not at a Clive Barker book signing. At a Clive Barker book signing you get Mr. Barker speaking to the audience about his numerous projects and about where he currently is in his creative life followed by a Q&A session. Then the book signing starts and he's extremely good at personalizing every encounter while keeping the line moving for everyone else. My friend and I each got to ask a question in the Q&A, got a picture with him, got other books we brought signed and got to have a quick little personal chat with him. Everyone that came seemed incredibly jazzed by the whole thing.
Anyway, here's some tidbits from Mr. Barker.
Tortured Souls is expected to be his next project as writer/director. It's based on the recent Todd McFarlane adult figurine collection which Mr. Barker wrote an accompanying story for. Mr. Barker describes it as "unapologetically horror", says it will use CGI as little as possible and it'll just barely get an R rating but the DVD will be NC-17, so that should be kick ass. He also seems to have as many possible projects as Quentin Tarantino, including adaptations of his brilliant novels The Books of Blood, The Thief of Always, Abarat and Weaveworld all in the works. He says he wishes he could clone himself so he can get everything done that he wants to get done, and I'm against human cloning but if we could get twice as much creative output from the minds of Clive Barker and Quentin Tarantino, I'm all for it.
The Abarat book collection will be in three parts. It was written around a collection of around 400 paintings he's been working on the last few years. They are not for sale but will be going on a tour around the country and can be glimpsed on the recent Fangoria Blood Drive DVD extra features or in the Abarat books themselves.
Rawhead Rex from the Books of Blood will be remade. Although Mr. Barker is credited as writing the original he was not happy with how it turned out and wants to remake it. He describes Rawhead Rex as a "9 ft tall phallus with teeth" and the story concerns Rawhead being accidentally resurrected in a small English town where it proceeds to use it's intelligence and hunting skills to devour the local population, especially it's children.
Mr. Barker says he likes to hide away, is uncomfortable with fame and only comes out to buy DVD's and comic books. His DVD collection, which puts Moriarty's to shame, is over 6000. Some of his recent favorites are High Tension and Anatomy from Germany and Queen Margot from France. He also enjoys what the Japanese have been doing with horror lately. He likes movies with extremes, hates chick flicks, doesn't particularly like comedy except for maybe dry British humor and this might come as a shock, hates the American Pie movies and Van Helsing.
Mr. Barker says he would like to write for at least 30 more years and eventually reach at least 50 books. He's at 20 books right now. He says that anyone who wants to become a writer needs to educate and discipline themselves so they can hold onto "fugitive ideas" whenever they may come, including on the toilet. He says that Pinhead came to him in a dream, or in what would be described as a nightmare by most people.
Anyway, there's a lot more I'm holding back including what's next for Harry D'Amoure(Lord of Illusions) and Pinhead(Hellraiser) because I want everyone who's interested to go to his website, look at the schedule and attend a book signing near them. I believe that all who do will too become disciples and will enjoy the strange and wonderful imaginings of the great artist Clive Barker.