Survivors-Hall-of-Fame

The most successful horror franchises tend to feature protagonists audiences can root for — heroes that viewers hope will beat the odds and emerge from their respective situations victorious and, well, alive. With that in mind, we here at RT decided to look back at some of cinema’s most stubborn survivors, those characters that somehow managed to avoid being offed in multiple horror movies.

Needless to say, you may want to avoid what follows below if you’re allergic to spoilers. Without further ado, here are our choices for the Horror Movie Survivor Hall of Fame!


Ellen Ripley

Ellen-Ripley

Survived: The Alien Franchise

You can’t keep a good woman down. Case in point: Ellen Ripley. Even if she only survived two-and-three-quarters of the first three Alien films, the DNA in her blood cells was enough to create a pretty killer replica (which gives us all hope for future Chuck Norris clones, but we digress).

Ripley could have gone the way of Dr. Frank Poole a whole bunch of times throughout the series. As the only survivor of the Nostromo (not counting Jones the cat), she still could have been torn to shreds when the alien hid on her shuttle. In Aliens, Ripley and a few of her compatriots survived a tough battle with the Alien Queen aboard the Sulaco. Even a universe-saving suicide in Alien 3 barely slows Ripley down — the follow-up isn’t called Alien Resurrection for nothing. How does she do it? Our guess is those decades-long stasis naps do a body good.


Ash Williams

Ash-Williams

Survived: The Evil Dead Franchise

You can possess him with a few demons. You can chop off his hand. Hell, you can even send him back through time. But the one thing you cannot do to Ashley “Ash” Williams: keep him down for good.The same can’t be said of Ash’s friends, who, in the first two Evil Deads offer up a survival rate of exactly zero. Ash is actually supposed to have died in the final frames of The Evil Dead, but the sequel retcons the whole thing, causing him to re-endure a gory getaway in the forest cabin. In the process, he loses his hand, but hey, chainsaw hand as replacement.

In the final Evil Dead, Army of Darkness, Ash is sent to 1300 AD. His only way to get back to the present time and his job at S-Mart: Going through a horde of the undead (led by an Ash clone) to retrieve the Necronomicon, the book of the dead. Groovy.


 Dr. Frankenstein

Dr-Frankenstein

Survived: The Frankenstein Series by Hammer Films

Some folks just don’t know when to quit. You’d think that Baron Victor von Frankenstein would reconsider his diabolical experiments in reanimation after nearly getting his dome lopped off in The Curse of Frankenstein, but no; this guy’s got a one-track mind. Unlike the Frankenstein of Mary Shelley and the Universal movies, our man Vic (played with eyebrow-raised relish by Peter Cushing) doesn’t evolve from hubristic to guilt-ridden — he’s pretty much a murderous mad scientist from minute one. After surviving the guillotine in The Curse of Frankenstein, the Baron continued his artificial life experiments in a bunch of Hammer films (either five or six, depending on whether you count the Cushing-free The Horror of Frankenstein as part of the cannon — many don’t). It’s pretty amazing that Frankenstein can perpetually stay one step ahead of death, given that angry townspeople, public officials, and even his own stitched-up creations are always trying to kill him.


Tommy Jarvis

Tommy-Jarvis

Survived: Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter, Friday the 13th, Part V – A New Beginning, Friday the 13th, Part VI – Jason Lives

The Friday the 13th series only had two protagonists who would carry themselves into sequels. The first was the original camp survivor who would be unceremoniously offed in Part II‘s opening sequence. The other: Tommy Jarvis. He first appeared in arguably the series’ best installment, Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter, as a young boy vacationing with his single mother and sister. With a penchant for masks, he and his sister succeed in confusing Jason, before Tommy is taken over by madness and hacks poor ol’ Jason Voorhees to death. The ambigious final shot of The Final Chapter suggests he has taken on an evil spirit.

In the godawful sequel, A New Beginning, Tommy is a taciturn mental patient, drifting in and out of institutions. As copycat murders begin around him, he suspects that his psychosis is taking over under the cover of night. Turns out the killer was just a disgruntled paramedic. In his final appearance, Jason Lives, Tommy attempts to tear Jason’s corpse asunder, but a steel pipe left in his heart attracts a bolt of lightning and Jason is resurrected. Ultimately, Tommy lures him back to the lake and to a watery grave. But we all know how long the dead stay dead in horror movies, don’t we?


Laurie Strode

Laurie-Strode

Survived: Halloween, Halloween II, Halloween H20Halloween (2007)

It’s no wonder that Laurie Strode takes a breather every couple of Halloween installments; neither sleep nor time nor even a franchise reboot can rid her of Michael Myers. In the original Halloween, Laurie (Jamie Lee Curtis) survived the babysitting gig from hell, successfully keeping Michael Myers at bay (though he killed a couple of her friends). In Halloween II, she learned why she’d been stalked — it turned out that she was a blood relative of the knife-wielding psycho.

Laurie lay low for the next four Halloweens, but reemerged in Halloween H2O; she had faked her own death and changed her name, but she couldn’t stay hidden from her brother forever. Unfortunately, Myers finally got the best of Laurie in Halloween: Resurrection. Rob Zombie’s 2007 franchise reboot began at the beginning of the Laurie Strode story, with Scout Taylor-Compton stepping into the role; whether this incarnation of Laurie Strode shows the same survival instinct as the first remains to be seen.


Dr. Loomis

Dr-Loomis

Survived: The Halloween Franchise

Most psychology PhDs don’t receive gun training in school, tranquilizer or otherwise. Not sure about cursed zombie entrapment (that could be covered during mandatory intern hours), but Dr. Samuel James Loomis is somehow capable of all these things. At one point in Halloween 4, he agilely escaped death by diving behind some convenient barrels while his unkillable former patient took out a gas tank with a truck, causing a near-fatal explosion.

Dr. Loomis’ constant attempts at shooting Michael Myers really only impeded the guy’s momentum. It only took the first two films for Loomis to realize that bullets just wouldn’t work. At the end of II, he decided to be the martyr and blow both Michael and himself up using a combo of oxygen and ether.

Oh wait… but they both survive — somehow. Maybe Loomis got the explosive recipe wrong. But that’s great because then we got him for four more films! In those films we saw him use Michael’s female prey as bait to lure him into a trap consisting of a metal net, a tranquilizer gun, and his fists. But it was when he used his shrink skills to reason with the monster that we thought, “Oh yeah, that’s what he was trained to do.”


Kirsty Cotton

Kristy-Cotton

Survived: The Hellraiser Franchise

Puzzle boxes were all the rage in the 1980s. Of course, when Kirsty Cotton played with one, she suffered the consequences: the opening of another realm filled with sado-masochistic Cenobytes led by none other than Pinhead himself. Pinhead’s posse included Butterball, Chatterer, and the Female. After attacks from a deceptive dead-skin-wearing uncle, a group of deal-reneging “explorers” from another realm, and a stepmother hell-bent on devouring her boyfriend, Kirsty even withstood a trip to the Cenobyte realm. In Hellraiser III, she existed only through old interview footage, but she returned in Hellseeker with some gruesome tricks up her sleeve.

Being orphaned could inspire one to focus on new hobbies and interests, like mastering such a puzzle box, incidentally called the “Lament Configuration.” That, and a propensity for turning the tables on your loved ones, could be all you need to survive when confronted by violent unearthly beings that thrive on the pleasures of pain.


Nancy Thompson

Nancy-Thompson

Survived: A Nightmare on Elm Street, Wes Craven’s New Nightmare

How exactly does one defeat a nemesis who manifests himself in the dream world and makes nightmares come true? Nancy Thompson seemed to have figured out the trick, but not before notorious burn victim Freddy Krueger dispatched a good number of her friends and family in gruesome ways.

After Freddy skewered her BFFs and effectively turned her boyfriend into a bloody geyser in the original Nightmare on Elm Street, Nancy somehow managed to escape, only to meet her end in Part 3: Dream Warriors. But here’s the kicker: Freddy actually came after the actress who played Nancy, Heather Langenkamp, in Wes Craven’s [very meta] New Nightmare, in which he also terrorized director Craven himself and the man who portrayed him in the movies, Robert Englund. Whoa… And maybe, you might think, a name change would help protect poor Nancy, but Freddy’s too smart for that.


Jill Tuck

Jill-Tuck

Survived: Saw III through Saw 3D

Throughout all the twists and turns of the Saw franchise, one woman emerged as the series’ unlikely hero (seriously, the bad guys got waaay more screen time than the goodies): Jill Tuck, the ex-wife of serial killer Jigsaw. Jill was a rehabilitation clinic director who suffered a miscarriage after an assault from a junkie, prompting Jigsaw’s descent into madness.

Despite the Saw series’ brutally high body count, Jill survived five filmed appearances. After Jigsaw’s death in Saw III, she received a mysterious box via his will. For a while, her role as either protagonist or antagonist was up in the air, making her the most compelling character outside of Jigsaw himself. Then it was revealed her final role in Jigsaw’s twisted blueprint was to “test” his apprentice, crazy corrupt cop Mark Hoffman. Jill almost took him out, but was eventually killed in the final Saw with the infamous reverse bear trap.


Cindy Campbell

Cindy-Campbell

Survived: The first four Scary Movie movies

A high-school-student-turned-college-student-turned-anchorwoman-turned-professional-boxer-turned-caregiver, Cindy Campbell knows how to throw down and maybe even snap some necks. Her response to a home-attack by Ghostface? What else? Throw a HOUSE PARTY! That would be the safest thing to do, right? But everyone ended up dead. Go figure. Her Matrix-like aerial fighting skills got her through another night, but could she survive a wedgie in Scary Movie 2? Turns out… she could and did!

This one was handy though. Only Cindy Campbell could MacGyver random objects into a tractor, allowing her to crash through the door of a refrigerator she was locked in. Even a UN nude-ray couldn’t stop this savvy ingénue. At one point, an alien Command tripod ensnared her with Venus flytraps in a grimy old bathroom, and she was instructed to find the key to free herself and her friend Brenda. The key was located behind her eye, but it wasn’t a problem for Cindy. She’s got a glass eye (old bar fight injury).

Cindy has survived a lot. She’s slick and sagacious. But we’re still not sure whether she’s still with us, since she sat out Scary Movie 5.


Sidney Prescott

Sidney-Prescott

Survived: The Scream Franchise

Poor Sidney Prescott. She survived an entire franchise dedicated to her demise, and it really all came down to reasons that were far beyond her control. What’s that saying about “the sins of the father” (or, in this case, mother)? Yeah, Sidney sort of represents the epitome of the adage.

Consider this: Sidney’s own boyfriend, Billy, played the long con on her and ultimately tried to off her in the first Scream because Sidney’s mom broke apart his parents’ marriage — yikes. But it got worse: who should come around for revenge in Scream 2 but Billy’s mom herself, understandably upset, along with an accomplice who just wanted to be famous for killing Sidney. Scream 3 saw Sidney terrorized by a half brother she never knew she had, upset about being rejected by their mother, and 4‘s Ghostface Killer turned out to be Sidney’s own cousin, itching to get a taste of Sidney’s fame. Sidney is safe and sound as of now, of course, but you never know; there might be a great granduncle or a step-niece just rarin’ for a go at her.


Alice

Alice

Survived: The Resident Evil Franchise

At first, it wouldn’t appear that the Umbrella Corporation of the Resident Evil films planned very well for a possible outbreak of their zombifying T-virus. In fact, the soldiers sent to Umbrella’s secret lab in 2002’s Resident Evil spent most of their time simply trying to survive.

But even in the face of this population-decimating epidemic, there was one particular survivor who eventually went on the offensive for the good of all mankind, and her name was Alice. The folks at Umbrella must have spotted her potential, too, because in Apocalypse (2004), they outfitted Alice with some genetic modifications, and in Extinction (2007), they even cloned her in hopes of building a butt-kicking army. She’s survived attacks by all kinds of mutations, speedy, strong, and grotesque, but she hasn’t fallen yet. Alice and Umbrella both know the whole ordeal is Umbrella’s fault, and her quest to bring them to justice continues through to the franchise’s sixth installment, which is scheduled to open next year.

The Wayans brothers are getting back into the spoofing business.

Variety reports that Keenen Ivory, Shawn, and Marlon Wayans have brought their next project — an untitled “sendup of cop actioners” — to Paramount. Keenen Ivory will direct from a script co-written by all three brothers.

Previous Wayans lampoons have included, of course, the four Scary Movie films, which have raked in over $420 million domestically.

Comedy fans who are hungry for more Wayans will soon be able to tune into their “scripted comedy” series for VH1, The Life and Times of Marcus “Felony” Brown.

Source: Variety

We’ve been waiting for funny-gal Anna Faris to get a lead role to suit her comedic skills for quite some time now — and I’m not talking about the "Scary Movie" movies. Apparently Ms. Faris was tired of waiting for the perfect concept to come along, so she went to the "Legally Blonde" screenwriters and pitched her new idea. (Hey fellas, she’ll be playing a centerfold!)

From Variety: "Paramount Pictures has picked up an untitled fish-out-of-water project from "Legally Blonde" scribes Karen McCullah Lutz and Kirsten Smith. Anna Faris is onboard to topline; Happy Madison is producing.

The project is based on an original idea by Faris that she brought to the writers. She’ll star as a newly unemployed centerfold with no other skills to parlay into a new career. She then takes the only job she can find — house mother at UCLA’s lamest sorority."

So… it’s sort of like a sillier, jigglier version of "Dead Poets Society"?

The Johnny Depp juggernaut Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest remained the most popular film in North America for a second weekend easily defending its box office crown against two new comedies that fought bitterly for the runnerup spot.

According to studio estimates, Sony’s Little Man narrowly edged out Universal’s You, Me and Dupree opening in second and third, respectively. With less than $400,000 separating the two new releases, chart positions could change when final numbers are tabulated on Monday.

Disney shattered more box office records with its runaway smash Pirates which hauled in an estimated $62.2M in its second weekend in theaters to boost its ten-day total to an eye-popping $258.2M. That’s the largest ten-day start of any film in history and the fastest any movie has cracked the quarter-billion dollar mark beating the old records which were both set last summer by Star Wars Episode III. The final Jedi sequel collected $236.9M in its first ten days and surged to $255.6M in its eleventh day.

Pirates did suffer a sizable 54% drop from its record-breaking opening weekend, however a large decline was widely expected since it had already absorbed such a massive amount of business when it entered its sophomore frame. Second weekend declines for the summer’s other big-budget tentpole pictures were larger including 56% for The Da Vinci Code, 59% for Superman Returns, and 67% for X-Men: The Last Stand. In just ten days, Dead Man’s Chest has quickly become the top-grossing film of 2006 and now sits at number 34 on the list of all-time domestic blockbusters ahead of Monsters, Inc. which grossed $255.9M in 2001.

The high seas adventure also enjoyed the third best second weekend gross ever trailing the $72.2M of 2004’s Shrek 2 and the $71.4M of 2002’s Spider-Man. Pirates is already the seventh biggest film ever for Disney and the fourth largest among live-action pics for the studio. The Mouse House also scored its 13th film to top the $200M mark which is the most of any Hollywood studio.Where can Captain Jack Sparrow sail to from here? The triple-century barrier should come crashing down by next weekend as the megablockbuster sequel continues on a trajectory that could see it loot $350-400M from the domestic market alone.

Opening in second place with an estimated $21.7M was Little Man starring Marlon and Shawn Wayans from director Keenan Ivory Wayans. The $64M Sony release averaged a stellar $8,567 from 2,533 theaters and tells the story of a diminutive crook who masquerades as a toddler in order to retrieve a stolen diamond. Teens and young adults made up the core crowd as studio data indicated that 59% of the audience was under the age of 25. Women slightly outnumbered the guys with 53% of the crowd. Reviews were mostly negative.

Little Man enjoyed an opening that was similar to that of the last effort by the Wayans brothers, White Chicks. That Sony comedy bowed on a Wednesday in June 2004 with a Friday-to-Sunday take of $19.7M as part of a $27.2M five-day launch on its way to $69.1M. The studio reported encouraging exit polls for Man with 85% marking it "excellent" or "very good." If estimates hold, it will be the third consecutive second place opening for Keenan Ivory Wayans after 2001’s Scary Movie 2 and White Chicks which were also summer comedies.

Close behind with an estimated $21.3M debut was Universal’s new comedy You, Me and Dupree. The PG-13 film averaged a solid $6,815 from 3,131 theaters and stars Owen Wilson as a houseguest who crashes in the home of a newlywed couple played by Kate Hudson and Matt Dillon. The $54M film played mostly to young adults in their twenties and thirties and skewed more towards women. Studio research indicated that 58% of the audience was under the age of 30 and 58% was female. Reviews were not very favorable. Dupree opened below the levels of Wilson’s previous hits like Starsky & Hutch which bowed to $28.1M in March 2004 and the $33.9M of Wedding Crashers which debuted one year ago this weekend.

While both new comedies opened with roughly the same weekend gross, and chart positions could change on Monday, it was Little Man that clearly delivered the more impressive performance. Playing in 600 fewer theaters, the Wayans brothers attracted enough of an audience to still sell the same amount of tickets and generated a per-theater average that was 26% stronger than Dupree’s. The Owen Wilson film however, cost $10M less to produce as it did not need to rely on costly special effects.

In its third battle against the forces of box office evil, the big-budget super hero flick Superman Returns fell to fourth place with an estimated $11.6M. Off a moderate 47%, the Warner Bros. pic lifted its cume to $163.7M after 19 days. The Man of Steel is well behind the $192.4M that War of the Worlds collected over the same period last year, but a bit ahead of Men in Black II‘s $158.1M from July 2002. However, those pricey pics posted stronger third weekend grosses of $15.2M and $14.6M, respectively. Superman Returns remains on a course to fly to $190-200M domestically which is less than what most in the industry were expecting from the Bryan Singer film.

Superman flew into over a dozen new countries around the world this weekend and grossed an estimated $38M from 36 markets to boost its international cume to $77M. In most territories, the comic book pic rocketed straight to number one, however in the United Kingdom it scored a solid number two bow behind the sophomore weekend of Pirates.

Despite competition from two new comedies, Meryl Streep held up well with her hit The Devil Wears Prada which grossed an estimated $10.5M in its third session. Down a little more than 30%, the Fox release has commanded an impressive $83.6M and is heading for the vicinity of $115M.

For the third straight weekend, the Disney/Pixar toon Cars enjoyed the smallest drop in the top ten and slipped less than 30% to an estimated $7.5M. After its sixth weekend, the G-rated blockbuster has upped its cume to a sturdy $219.7M passing The Da Vinci Code to become the third highest grossing film of the year after the Pirates and X-Men sequels. Cars is running 6% behind the pace of Pixar’s last film The Incredibles after the same amount of time, but is 3% ahead of the company’s Monsters, Inc. Those pics ended up with $261.4M and $255.3M, respectively. Cars looks to have enough gas in its tank to be able to reach $250M. Barring any surprise megahits, that would give Disney the two biggest blockbusters of the summer season. Coincidentally, the studio also ruled the 2003 summer contest with the first Pirates and Pixar’s Finding Nemo both crossing the $300M threshold.

Adam Sandler followed close behind in seventh with Click which fell 41% to an estimated $7M in its fourth frame. With $119.7M in the bank, the Sony release is still running a bit ahead of the studio’s 2003 Sandler vehicle Anger Management which collected $115.3M at the same point on its way to $135.6M. Click should be able to reach $135-140M.

The Lake House starring Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock grossed an estimated $1.6M, off 45%, for a $48.9M total. The Warner Bros. romance should end with a respectable $53M. Paramount’s Nacho Libre laughed up an estimated $1.5M, down 54%, putting its sum at $77.1M. Jack Black‘s wrestling comedy looks to go home with around $81M.

Warner Independent Pictures expanded its animated crime drama A Scanner Darkly from 17 to 216 theaters nationwide and hit the top ten with an estimated $1.2M. Richard Linklater‘s R-rated film averaged a healthy $5,486 per location and raised its cume to $1.8M. The Keanu Reeves-starrer will stay in roughly the same number of locations this coming weekend.

With a brutal heat wave hitting much of the country, audiences continued to flock to the hit global warming documentary An Inconvenient Truth which slipped a scant 5% to an estimated $1.1M. Now in its eighth weekend of release, the Paramount Vantage title finished a hair out of the top ten and has taken in a solid $17M.

Three films from the Universal Studios family fell from the top ten over the weekend. The racing sequel The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift dropped 59% to an estimated $1M in its fifth lap pushing its domestic total to $59.7M. The $75M actioner has grossed an additional $42M overseas and continues to open in new countries each week. In North America, look for a final take of $61M.

The Break-Up fell 52% to an estimated $777,000 giving the Vince VaughnJennifer Aniston comedy $116M to date. The $52M production should end its relationship with theaters at $118M. Internationally, Break-Up has grossed $24.5M thus far with major European markets like the United Kingdom, Germany, and Italy still to come between now and September. The Focus Features actioner Waist Deep tumbled 63% to an estimated $695,000 putting its cume at $20.7M. Little more is expected for the inexpensive film which might close with around $22M.

The top ten films grossed an estimated $146.1M which was off 4% from last year when Johnny Depp‘s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory debuted at number one with $56.2M; but up 8% from 2004 when Will Smith‘s I, Robot opened in the top spot with $52.2M.

Author: Gitesh Pandya, www.BoxOfficeGuru.com

This week at the movies, we’ve got some unwanted houseguests, in the guise of a guy with a bad case of arrested development ("You, Me and Dupree," starring Owen Wilson, Kate Hudson and Matt Dillon) and a pint-sized thief on the lam ("Little Man," starring Marlon and Shawn Wayans). Will the critics be welcoming, or will they boot these flicks into the street?

Owen Wilson has made a side career of crashing things. He (literally and figuratively) crashed weddings in "The Royal Tenenbaums" and "Wedding Crashers," and now, in "You, Me and Dupree," he’s crashing on the couch of uptight newlyweds, played by Kate Hudson and Matt Dillon (who’s been involved in a "Crash" of his own). The plot involves the recently jobless Wilson, whose free-wheeling antics get under the skin of his hosts. While the critics say "Dupree" is reasonably warm and fun, it’s inconsistent and lacks the real comic punch to be anything more than mildly amiable. At 22 percent on the Tomatometer, "Dupree" may not be for you and me.


An unemployed Owen Wilson considers a career as an interior decorator.

Shawn and Marlon Wayans‘ previous film, "White Chicks," has legions of guilty defenders, despite (or, perhaps more accurately, because of) the fact that it’s tasteless, ludicrous, and often downright bizarre. Now they’re back with "Little Man," the story of a diminutive thief who poses as a baby in order to infiltrate the home of a suburban couple unwittingly in possession of stolen goods (said couple wisely takes the baby in, despite the fact that he has a mouthful of teeth). The question among critics is not whether "Little Man" is a good movie, but whether it contains laughs. Many say no, some resoundingly so, but for those of you who treasure lowbrow humor, politely ignore "Little Man"’s Tomatometer of 20 percent.


What’s the least realistic thing in this picture? I say it’s the fact that no babies wear bonnets like that anymore. Or the tat. One or the other.

Also opening this week, albeit in limited release: Francois Ozon‘s latest, "Time to Leave," is at 87 percent on the Tomatometer; "Gabrielle," starring Isabelle Huppert, is at 73 percent; "Changing Times," starring Catherine Deneuve and Gerard Depardieu, is at 70 percent; the black comedy "Mini’s First Time" is at 50 percent; the David Mamet adaptation "Edmond" is at 33 percent; Ed Burns‘ latest guy-bonding flick "The Groomsmen" is at 29 percent; and the sex comedy "The Oh in Ohio" is at 24 percent.

Recent Owen Wilson Movies:
————————————
76% — Cars (2006)
75% — Wedding Crashers (2005)
51% — The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou (2004)
63% — Starsky and Hutch (2004)
17% — The Big Bounce (2004)

Recent Movies Written and Starring Marlon and Shawn Wayans:
——————————————————————————
13% — White Chicks (2004)
11% — Scary Movie 2 (2001)
52% — Scary Movie (2000)
24% — Don’t Be A Menace… (1996)

Big fan of pretty girls and zombies? Then you probably already dig the "Resident Evil" franchise. (Well, the first flick, anyway.) IGN FilmForce has snagged an early pair of "RE3" pics that are heavy on the girls and light on the zombies. For the combo, we’ll probably have to wait until "Resident Evil: Extinction" hits theaters next year.

From IGNFF: "Resident Evil: Extinction is again based on the wildly popular videogame series and picks up where the last film left off. Alice (Milla Jovovich), now in hiding in the Nevada desert, once again joins forces with Carlos Oliveira (Oded Fehr) and L.J. (Mike Epps), along with new survivors Claire (Ali Larter), K-Mart (Spencer Locke) and Nurse Betty (Ashanti) to try to eliminate the deadly virus that threatens to make every human being undead… and to seek justice. Since being captured by the Umbrella Corporation, Alice has been subjected to biogenic experimentation and becomes genetically altered, with super-human strengths, senses and dexterity. These skills, and more, will be needed if anyone is to remain alive."

Click here for the pics. (And why isn’t Sienna Guillory‘s character mentioned in the plot synopsis? Uh oh….)

In recent weeks RT talked with the cast and director of "Scary Movie 4," including David "Airplane!" Zucker and Regina Hall. Read on for the "Scary" finale: an Anna FarisCraig Bierko double whammy!

Anna Faris can thank 2000’s "Scary Movie" for launching her film career; she’s starred as the sweet, clueless Cindy Campbell in every subsequent sequel, and made numerous comic appearances in films like "Lost in Translation," "Waiting…" and "Just Friends." Find out what Anna shared about doing comedy, starring in a franchise, and working with David Zucker.

Q: You’ve been in "Scary Movie" 1, 2, 3, and now 4; how has shooting this film been different than making the other three?

Anna Faris: With this one it was a little bit different because we came to it with a little more of the script intact, more of a finished product. With the third one, they were writing as we went along, there was a lot of additional photography, and we had to change some of the plot all around — a lot of changing every day.

Q: Can the "Scary Movie" franchise keep going after this fourth film?

Faris: You know, I wouldn’t put it past those guys. I think because we’re a series, we can continue to reinvent ourselves. It’s almost a new task every time; there are no storylines that we need to follow, there aren’t any rules in terms of plot structures. There’s nothing that we need to stick to…so I think that as long as we continue to make money, we’re gonna keep on going.

I like to say that I like to do fun, silly movies like "Brokeback Mountain," so…I’m surprised that they kept me around, I’m flattered. I think if you had told me back when I was doing the first "Scary Movie" that I would be doing the fourth one, I don’t know if I’d be happy or depressed!

Honestly, if I’m in "Scary Movie 10" I think I’ll be pretty happy. I never really imagined that I’d be able to make a living doing this, in any way, so I’m really grateful.

Q: In "Scary 3" and "Scary 4," David Zucker‘s got you doing a lot of physical comedy. Did you ever object to it?

Faris: I’m always pretty game, especially because I think Cindy’s so sweet, and it gets a little bit annoying so it’s fun to take me down every now and then. There was that one shot where I get hit in the face with an airplane food cart…that, I didn’t want to do more than twice. That hurt pretty bad, and they saved that for my last shot.

Q: Do you watch the films you parody so you can mimic the performances?

Faris: I would see them anyway, for "Scary Movie," but not necessarily because my character imitates anybody anymore. I don’t really think I’m doing an impersonation of anybody, but I think it’s important to understand the feel and mood of a particular movie.

[On channeling Sarah Michelle Gellar in the "Grudge" scene] I do think it’s a little bit unconscious of a performance, because a lot of my lines are very similar to what she’s saying. But I wouldn’t say that I’m trying to do an imitation. Cindy’s now sort of evolved from…she’s not so bright…she’s a nurse — I’m scared. And she has to save humanity!

Q: Can you tell us more about Zucker’s direction to use "The Landry" look?

Faris: He sent me a picture of Tom Landry doing that [makes squishy face], so he calls that "The Landry." He has a few more expressions like, "Who Farted?" and he has "Downward Chomping," so it’s a really great acting process, working on these movies…everything’s broken down into a series of four basic expressions…

Q: Do you watch the box office numbers, like Regina does?

Faris: The first couple of years I was here, I had no idea what anything meant. I didn’t realize that when "Scary Movie" opened at like $43 million or whatever, I had no idea if that was good or bad. I had never looked at box office numbers before — I grew up in Seattle, there was no reason to. But now, of course, I’m a little bit more savvy.

Q: You’ve played a lot of comedic characters during your career…

Faris: I grew up doing really dramatic work; I’d never done comedy before so I don’t really think that I’m the funny girl, I never really thought I could be…I think I took myself really seriously for a really long time.

It’s true that I think I’m still working on breaking the idea of being typecast. I was really surprised when I moved out here and started out in "Scary Movie," that this industry thought of people as either comedic or dramatic actresses. I didn’t think that there were two different categories, necessarily.

For a while it was really hard for me get auditions for dramatic work. Now that doors are opening up a lot more for me, I think I’ll just chip away and try to just do good work. And if I do comedy for the rest of my life, I’ll be really happy.

—-

Craig Bierko joins the cast of "Scary Movie 4" with a resume that dates back to 1987 and includes stints on television, in theater, and in movies like "Cinderella Man." "Scary Movie 4" allows him to flex his (very hilarious) comedic chops as working class, single father/Tom Cruise-ish hero, Tom Ryan. Read on to hear Craig’s humorous takes on parodying Tom Cruise, transitioning between the stage and screen, and being recognized, sorta, on the street.

Q: How did you approach your character of Tom Ryan, especially as a parody of Tom Cruise?

Craig Bierko: As far as that stuff’s concerned, I saw the Oprah scene at the end and my one hesitation was that I wanted to make sure we weren’t going to be parodying anyone’s beliefs or personal life, or doing any nasty speculations or anything like that. As long as it was making fun of something that happened in a public forum, I was fine with that.

There’s nobody in the world who looks less like Tom Cruise than me, so I didn’t think they hired me to "do" Tom Cruise. It’s basically a "movie hero guy" who’s in that situation, but I didn’t have any interest, nor did [the filmmakers], in doing an imitation of Tom Cruise.

Q: What was your favorite scene in "Scary Movie 4?"

Bierko: The "Brokeback" stuff really made me laugh, and that was funny because I thought, this is something that is parodied so much, but it’s uniquely "Scary Movie," just the idea of having those two guys [Anthony Anderson and Kevin Hart] is funny.

The bigger laughs are always funny, but I love the little stuff — like the locks, the guy trying to get in and not being able to time the locks — just because that always happens! And that alone is funny but the fact that there are spaceships — it’s so annoying, but it’s more annoying than the spaceships outside — that, I love.

Q: We heard from Zucker that you improvised a lot of that scene…

Bierko: I think we had a few hours to shoot that scene, and David [Zucker] just said, we’re taking the day. We took the day because it was just so enjoyable. We came up with so much of how they [Tom and Marvin] were getting it wrong.

I read the script and it was laugh-out-loud funny; these guys know what they’re doing. You read the script and it actually reads the way the movie looks, with all the sound effects and everything. There wasn’t anything to improve upon, even the improvised stuff was just because there were mostly actions, and [Zucker] said "try something here" or "go crazy with this, we’ll just keep the camera running."

Q: How familiar were you with the movies you were parodying?

Bierko: I’d seen "Saw," and "War of the Worlds." I think I saw it the day it came out, and I didn’t see any of the others.

I had no idea "Scary Movie 4" would be coming out; I wouldn’t have guessed that ["WOW"] would have been a movie they were parodying, because it didn’t strike me as a horror movie, but I guess it had elements of it — the blood and stuff. But they really were giant vampire machines, so I guess it was a horror movie. But I loved it when I read [the script], I thought this was just the right take on it.

Q: Coming off of "Cinderella Man," did you give Anna Faris any advice on her boxing?

Bierko: That would have been a great way to start. "I’m Craig Bierko; listen, some notes." No, I wasn’t around, but actually the guy who trained her is a kickboxer with the fastest recorded knock-out in boxing history, something like 2 seconds. I wanted to train with him, but I didn’t have the time.

Q: What was the hardest part about shooting "Scary Movie 4?"

Bierko: The one difficult thing about doing this movie is that when I hear David Zucker laugh, it makes me laugh. But the only time you move on to the next sequence is when he laughs, because when he laughs it’s funny. That’s really the barometer.

Q: How different is it acting on stage and acting in the movies?

Bierko: I discovered I don’t have to talk nearly as loud, because I have a microphone right there. They’re both ridiculous situations; in one, you’re standing on an elevated platform, while 1300 people are staring at you during an intimate pretend moment, and in the other there’s a camera right here while you’re trying to have a personal conversation and ignore the fact that there’s a giant machine on your head. They’re both ridiculous, and I think that’s the only thing they really have in common.

Q: Is there a role you’ve done that gets you recognized on the street?

Bierko: I’m that level of fame where they go, it’s either "weren’t you at the wedding of Joyce and…" and the other one is, "what did I just see you in?" and I’m like, I don’t know. "Well, list the things that you have been in." And I’m just like, no, why should this be an exercise in humiliation? So I go, "Sex and the City?" "No, I don’t watch television." "Scary Movie 4?" "No, I don’t go to see scary movies."

There was one time I almost said, but I didn’t, because it would have been just too mean, but it is kind of humiliating — "Do a little chicken dance for me, so I can figure out where I’ve seen you before" — and I almost said to this woman who was with her husband, "I’ll do that, but you have to mention every time you had sex with somebody before you got married to see what that feels like."

RT’s "Scary Movie 4" interview series continues with a sit-down with "Scary" veteran Regina Hall, whose oversexed character Brenda has made it through all four of the series installments and has gone from high school student to mature (kind of) news reporter.

Regina Hall earned a degree in journalism in 1997 — then promptly changed course to pursue a career in acting. She landed the role of killer-evading teen Brenda Meeks in 2000’s "Scary Movie," and along with Anna Faris has appeared in every "Scary" up until now.

Q: Why do you think [David] Zucker‘s comedy is so appealing?

Regina Hall: Well, first of all I don’t think there’s that many people who can do it. So you have to have someone who’s really clever, and there’s a certain amount of wit and smartness that [Zucker] has, and a kind of silliness. I think that because so many people can’t do it, it’s not done that often.


Zoltar and Brenda in "Scary Movie 4"

Q: How does working with Keenan Ivory Wayans on the first two "Scary Movies" compare with Zucker in "Scary 3" and "Scary 4?"

Hall: I think Keenan [Wayans] is also wonderful at spoofing, and I don’t think either is any less. I think they’re different, I think they’re tonally different. What Keenan, and Marlon and Shawn Wayans brought to the original "Scary Movie" is a testament, because that is the reason there are three more. They built that audience, they started the franchise.

They had a raunchier tone, and that’s not a bad thing, but it’s a specific thing. Keenan is also open about improvisation; David is a little more specific, because David loves physical comedy — timing, falling, getting hit, and responding to that — so he’s less outlandish and for him it’s in the dialogue.

If you look at "Scary Movie 3" and this fourth one, or his "Naked Gun" series, or "Airplane!," a lot of times you miss things the first time because there’s a lot in the dialogue, and there’s always things going on in the background that you may not notice the first time you watch it.

What David brought to the franchise is, perhaps, opened it up for people who maybe don’t do raunchy, and kids love it.


Old times: Brenda (Hall) and Cindy (Anna Faris) in "Scary Movie 3"

Q: Are you a numbers-watcher (in terms of box office openings)?

Hall: [I am] for "Scary Movie" specifically, because you’re not gonna get critical acclaim for this type of movie. We’re not doing "Capote." So it’s not something you can really read reviews for…in general, a lot of people don’t give comedies the best reviews anyways, so I don’t really read the reviews because it’s hard.

"Scary Movie 4" is a movie that’s done for performance, it’s a movie that you want to open big, you want it to do well, and you want a lot of people to come out and see it and laugh.

Anna and I won’t get our Oscars for this one, so we’ve got to get our numbers!

Q: How did you decide to trade journalism for acting?

Hall: I had gotten job offers. My professors at NYU were absolutely appalled…I finished the program, I graduated, and the woman who headed the department felt I was talented and she was going to help me. And I said, I just want everyone to know, I’m going to become an actress. And I’m going to go and study acting, and this has been great and I love it but…and I remember there was a deafening silence because they were like, "Oh my God I thought she was smart!"

Q: What were your favorite scenes in "Scary 4?"

Hall: I loved the Leslie Nielson scene with him giving the address to the "un," and I loved the scene where Anna is describing silently…

I’m still in shock that I [as Brenda] was so turned on by the torture paraphernalia; I’m concerned about Brenda.

This week’s wide releases include a group of zoo creatures that reconnect with their roots ("The Wild") and another installment of the genre-spoofing "Scary Movie" series ("Scary Movie 4"). What do the critics say?

A fourth "Scary Movie" is hitting theaters; this time it’s parodying "War of the Worlds," "Saw," and an obscure but terrifying slasher flick called "Brokeback Mountain." A lot of people like these movies — heck, they have made four of them — but those people aren’t generally movie critics; the scribes are calling this latest installment a hit-or-miss affair. But, if you’re in the market for this kind of thing, you should know that "Scary Movie 4," at 44 percent on the Tomatometer, currently stands as the second-best reviewed film in the series, behind the original (52 percent).

Four animals bust out of the zoo in search of their natural habitats, only to fall into the clutches of a buffoonish-but-dangerous animal cult leader. If the plot description for "The Wild" sounds a tad familiar, that’s because it’s essentially the same as last summer’s not-so-red-hot "Madagascar" (55 percent on the Tomatometer). It’s amazing that, given the seemingly limitless potential of CGI, the scribes are already accusing new animated films of being derivative. The critics also say "The Wild" is noisy and busy without being particularly funny or engaging. At 17 percent on the Tomatometer, "The Wild" is the second-worst reviewed CGI film to date, only outranking "Doogal," which is at five percent.

On to America’s favorite game: Banana Kid correctly guessed "The Benchwarmers" would end up with a 12 percent on the Tomatometer. Unfortunately, no one came particularly close to "Phat Girlz‘" not-great-but-not-terrible Tomatometer of 31 percent.

Scary Movies:
——————
52% — Scary Movie (2000)
11% — Scary Movie 2 (2001)
39% — Scary Movie 3 (2003)

Recent CGI Films:
———————–
60% — Ice Age: The Meltdown (2006)
5% — Doogal (2006)
46% — Hoodwinked (2006)
37% — Chicken Little (2005)
27% — Valiant (2005)

Indie youth-culture director Gregg Araki has cast Anna Faris in his upcoming stoner comedy, "Smiley Face," says the Hollywood Reporter.

Faris, who became known to audiences in the Wayans brothers’ "Scary Movie" spoofs, will play an aspiring actress/slacker in the Araki flick who accidentally eats some weed brownies; hilarity ensues. The story is penned by first time writer Dylan Haggerty and is being co-produced by Anonymous Content and First Look Studios, whose upcoming slate includes much heavier pics like Nick Cave’s "The Proposition," Larry Clark‘s "Wassup Rockers," and Wes Craven‘s "The Breed."

Faris next appears in "Scary Movie 4" this April, and will play alongside Uma Thurman and Luke Wilson in this summer’s "My Super Ex-Girlfriend."

Think there’s still some juice to be squeezed out of the "Scary Movie" concept? Those Weinstein brothers sure do, which is why we’ll see more of Anna Faris bopping through numerous flick parodieson her way to a solid opening weekend and a slow fade-out from the multiplexes. Anyway, check out the trailer right here.

"The Scary Movie gang is back with send-ups of "War of the Worlds," "The Grudge," "The Village," "Saw" and "Saw II," "Million Dollar Baby" and much more. Legendary comedy director David Zucker ("Airplane!," the "Naked Gun" franchise, "Scary Movie 3," and "Ruthless People") and producer Bob Weiss reunite to take aim at some of the best fright films, the latest box office hits, music, current events, pop culture, and your favorite celebrities. Anna Faris and Regina Hall are back as the loveable, dim-witted Cindy Campbell and her self-serving, sex-crazed pal, Brenda, respectively – joined this time around by Craig Bierko ("Cinderella Man"), as the cute-but-utterly clueless Tom Ryan. Together, they battle to save the world from a ruthless alien invasion. And the outrageous celebrity cameos include: Carmen Electra, Shaquille O’Neal, Dr. Phil, Bill Pullman, Chris Elliott, Molly Shannon, Michael Madsen, rappers Chingy and Lil’ John, Leslie Nielsen returning as our fearless Commander in Chief, plus many, many more surprises."

"Scary Movie 4" opens on April 14th.

Fans of the spoof sub-genre of comedy should take a quick visit to JoBlo’s Movie Emporium, because that’s where you’ll find the new one-sheet for the rom-com satire "Date Movie," as well as THREE new posters for next year’s "Scary Movie 4."

Written & directed by Jason Friedberg & Aaron Seltzer, "Date Movie" is a spoof of all those painful romantic-comedy conventions that guys (and movie critics) always hate. It stars Alyson Hannigan, Fred Willard, Jennifer Coolidge, Eddie Griffin, and Carmen Electra. Release date: February 17th.

"Scary Movie 4," which is directed by David Zucker and penned by Pat Proft & Craig Mazin. The posters poke fun at "Saw," "The Grudge," and "War of the Worlds," so we can safely expect those flicks to earn a fair ribbing … among a dozen others. Anna Faris is returning for a fourth go-round, and she’ll be joined by Carmen Electra (yes, again), Regina Hall, Simon Rex, Leslie Nielsen, and Andre Benjamin. Release date: April 14th.

(My favorite is the "Saw" poster. Clever stuff.)

A fresh press release from Universal informs us that there will soon be a "Bring It On 3" to enjoy, but also reminds us that, hey yeah, there WAS a direct-to-video "Bring It On" sequel that we never saw.

"Bring It On 3" (working title), the highly anticipated third installment of the wildly successful Universal Pictures film franchise about status and rivalry in the cheerleading world, began principal photography on Monday, October 24th in the Los Angeles area. Universal Studios Home Entertainment Family Productions and Beacon Pictures present "Bring It On 3," a Universal DVD Original slated for release in 2006.

Following the tremendous success of its ever-popular predecessors, "Bring It On 3" marks the latest effort from Universal’s newly established DVD Original strategy to aggressively develop, produce or acquire superior family-branded fare for the explosive made-for-DVD market.

"Bring It On 3" stars talented young performers Hayden Panettiere ("Ice Princess," "Raising Helen," "Racing Stripes") and Solange Knowles Smith ("Johnson Family Vacation," "The Proud Family") and features gifted newcomers Gus Carr, Marcy Rylan, Cindy Chiu, Giovonnie Samuels, Francia Almendarez, Gary Leroi Gray, Danielle Savre and Jessie Fife. Also on board in a special appearance is Def Jam Records music sensation Rihanna, whose smash dance hit "Pon de Replay" from her debut album "Music Of The Sun" dominated the charts this summer.

"Bring It On 3" is directed by Steve Rash ("American Pie Presents Band Camp," "Can’t Buy Me Love") from a screenplay by Alyson Fouse ("Scary Movie 2," UPN’s "Everybody Hates Chris") and produced by David Roessell ("The Lizzie McGuire Movie," "Inspector Gadget 2"). Jon Kuyper ("Tremors 4: The Legend Begins," "Happy Endings") serves as line producer and unit production manager. The film is executive produced by Armyan Bernstein, Charlie Lyons and Zanne Devine.

The filmmakers have assembled a top production team for "Bring It On 3," including veteran director of photography Victor J. Kemper ("Dog Day Afternoon," "The Jerk," "Pee-wee’s Big Adventure"), production designer Simon Dobbin ("Slipstream," "Kingdom Come"), costume designer Shawn Barton ("Soul Plane," "A Man Apart") and editor Danny Saphire ("Good Advice," "American Pie Presents Band Camp").

The team also includes some of the country’s most accomplished choreographers who collaborate with the filmmakers and cast to present state-of-the art cheer/dance segments, including Tony Gonzalez ("Bring It On Again," "The Hot Chick," "Haunted Mansion," numerous music videos) Eric Little (acclaimed cheer choreographer), Tanisha Scott (music videos for Sean Paul, the Pussycat Dolls, NAS) and the Emmy®-nominated team, Richmond Talauega & Tone Talauega (RIZE-Producers/Music Producers; MTV Video Award nominees for Jennifer Lopez’ "Get Right").

Shake your pom poms! "Bring It On 3" is a sassy and spirited production with new moves, new music and eye-popping dance sequences. Britney Allen (Hayden Panettiere) is living the dream — the cheerleader’s dream. At the elite seaside campus of Pacific Vista High School, Britney is captain of the cheerleading squad and the envy of everyone at school-including one overly-ambitious teammate. When Britney hears about a forthcoming audition for a top cheer squad to appear in recording star Rihanna’s upcoming television special, she is determined that her Pirates cheer squad will capture the coveted spot.

But Britney’s life turns from cheer-topia to cheer-tastrophe when her father’s job takes her family to Crenshaw Heights, a multi-ethnic working-class neighborhood east of Los Angeles. At her new school, Britney is viewed with suspicion by most of the students, especially by Camille (Solange Knowles Smith), the overly confident and acerbic leader of the Crenshaw Heights Warriors cheerleading squad. No one is more surprised than Camille, however, when Britney proves herself and secures a spot on the Warriors’ cheer squad. Britney and her new teammates work feverishly to prepare for the audition for Rihanna, incorporating some edgy new moves into their performance. Now the pressure is on, as the Warriors find themselves locked in a high-stakes cheer-off with Pacific Vista, Britney’s old school! During the climactic, no-holds-barred fight to the finish, friendships, loyalties and talents are tested-but only one team can come out on top."

Carmen Electra, Simon Rex, and Leslie Nielsen will return to the silly spoof spot one more time when they co-star alongside Anna Faris in "Scary Movie 4," says The Hollywood Reporter.

"Electra, who died in the original installment of the "Scary Movie" franchise, is back to play a new character in a plotline that parodies "The Village." Spoof vet Nielsen and Rex will reprise their roles from "Scary Movie 3." Anna Faris and Regina Hall already have boarded the project. The fourth chapter of the spoof franchise will take on horror and superhero movies."

Directed by veteran spoofmaker David Zucker and written by Craig Mazin & Pat Proft, Dimension’s "Scary Movie 4" aims to be ready for release on April 14th.

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