Daybreakers‘ Sparkle-Free Vampires” width=”560″/>
Way back in 2003, Australian directors Michael and Peter Spierig took the world — well, the horror world — by storm with a little low-budget zombie gore comedy called Undead, which mainstream critics hated and horror nerds loved. It wasn’t long before Lionsgate came calling and signed the brothers to direct their next script, Daybreakers. “Hurrah!” cried horror fans. And then, in what’s become an increasingly standard trajectory for fringe movies as of late, Lionsgate stalled, and stalled and stalled. And now it’s seven years later, and the movie is only just about to hit theaters.
So, will this latest vampire flick be able to make its mark in this, the year of the vampire? And just what were the filmmakers thinking when they agreed to move ahead with a lead blood-sucker named — wait for it — Edward!?
Weighing in on the news in 2005, Dark Horizons reported breathlesslythat, “Some are already calling Australian directors Michael and Peter Spierig ‘the next big thing’, and as their two-year old horror comedy Undead finally opens throughout North America, the brothers are already prepping their latest film, a vampire movie with a twist…”
The horror community was quietly enthused, but it wasn’t until 2007, when word emerged that Ethan Hawke and Willem Dafoe had signed on to star, that things really got interesting. “I am pretty stoked about Dafoe joining the cast; in my opinion, the guy is already living as a vampire in secret,” joked Cinematical. “And, heck, he’s also got a pretty good vampire-related track record having starred in Shadow of the Vampire back in 2000. Hawke, on the other hand, I’m not so sure about. Hopefully he won’t break a record for being the most boring vampire of all time…” Meanwhile, the MTV Movies Blog got in its own subtle dig at the Reality Bites star, reporting the news in a post titled, “Ethan Hawke Gets Ready To Suck As Vampire Researcher.”
Of course, it was easy to snark when no one had seen art from the movie, which is no longer the case! The first trailer hit theaters in November and gave vampire fans a glimmer of hope. “I’d never really heard of Daybreakers before now,” confessed ScreenRant. “But it’s quickly made its way onto my most anticipated list.” “Get pumped!” advised CinemaBlend. “We’ve got a vampire movie on the way and it’s not part of The Twilight Saga! Enjoy it while it lasts… Finally, vampires who act like the bloodthirsty monsters they were meant to be! ”
Even the movie’s fangalicious promo posters are driving up the buzz. FirstShowing jumped on the Daybreakers bandwagon when its writer spied one on a bus shelter while driving home: “Bravo to whoever designed this poster at Lionsgate, it’s one of the most effective vampire ads I’ve ever seen. It may sound cliche, but looking at this poster actually made me want to see Daybreakers even more than I did before,” he reported. ShockTillYouDrop had a similar reaction, reporting that to judge by the ads, the filmmakers’ intent seemed to be to make you “forget today’s glamorous version of vampires.”
In other words, quite a marketing coup. And that’s not all! “The movie Daybreakers has intrigued me ever since I saw the trailer for the first time,” chimed in MovieViral.com. “How can you not love the idea of society being predominantly vampires, with free humans being outlaws? It’s a world I would love to get right in the thick of, and now I can, thanks to a new site called Capture Humans.” For those who haven’t checked out Capture Humans just yet, think of it as a Facebook app that posits you and your buddies as the Patient Zeros of the Daybreakers world. Plenty creepy…
Of course, far more important than even the most buzz-generating ad campaign is the movie itself, specificall whether or not whether or not it’s actually any good. Well, promising news on that front! “Any possible fault in the casting is inconsequential because of the world the Spierigs have created,” declares Fangoria. “The brothers have opened up the Vampire genre into a whole new playing field… Daybreakers is new and exciting and fresh.” And HorrorsNotDead opines that “though the horror crowd will want to hold onto it because the film has a lethal, gory seam to its bloodsucker proceedings, Daybreakers is at its core a sci-fi film that happens to be about vampires. It also happens to be a pretty damned good film.”
As a matter of fact, Daybreakers is currently enjoying a 100 percent fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and it appears there may just be room for more than one vampire named Edward at the box office after all.Read More