Last week saw the quiet, very limited release of The Town that Dreaded Sundown, a remake of the 1976 horror film, which was produced by American Horror Story showrunner Ryan Murphy and Jason Blum’s Blumhouse Productions. It’s a rare release in a year that has so far been pretty quiet when it comes to horror remakes (unless you count monster-sized disaster movie Godzilla).
This lull in the subgenre of horror remakes might be partially due to the fact that a lot of the current profit is attached to recent original franchises like Insidious, Paranormal Activity and The Purge, which are produced on tiny budgets and have earned massive profits without their studios needing to spend money acquiring remake rights for old movies. Nonetheless, there’s one horror remake that’s currently heading into production: a remake of Eli Roth’s 2002 horror film Cabin Fever.
For those who haven’t seen the original, Cabin Fever is about a group of college students who head to a cabin in the woods (sound familiar?) for a nice summer vacation. After meeting some unusual locals and hanging around in skimpy clothing for a while, the college students find out the hard way that the water in the area has been infected with a flesh-eating virus. Much gore ensues, along with a generous handful of dark humor.
Roth has an executive producer credit on the remake, but it doesn’t sound like that’s anything more than a cursory nod to him for giving the filmmakers a thumbs-up. The new Cabin Fever is being directed by Travis Zariwny (Scavengers) and produced by Armory Films, and principal photography has already begun. The cast includes Gage Golightly (Teen Wolf), Dustin Ingram (Paranormal Activity 3), Samuel Davis (From Dusk Till Dawn), Matthew Daddario (Delivery Man) and Nadine Crocker (Deadgirl).
The Cabin Fever remake will use the exact same script as the original film. In the words of the press release, this is partially in order to avoid “going through a long, delayed studio development process,” though it’s questionable whether or not that’s good enough reason to make a word-for-word remake of a movie that only came out about a decade ago.
Roth compares this approach to “re-staging a play” and says that Zariwny has an “amazing vision” for the film, but the idea of just dusting off an old movie script and reusing it probably won’t inspire too much excitement among horror fans.
The Cabin Fever remake doesn’t currently have a release date, but will be seeking a distributor at the American Film Market next month.