Search This Blog

ALIEN ORIGIN has a Trailer and a Poster

The Asylum's next found-footage documentary, Alien Origin, won't be released for a couple weeks, but now we have a look at the trailer:

The footage comes courtesy of an Adventure Journalist accompanying a Special Forces team in Belize back in 2010. This, to anyone's knowledge, will be the first time the footage has been made available to the general public. 

What world-shattering secrets has The Asylum unlocked this time? Find out Tuesday, June 12th, when Alien Origin hits DVD, Blu-Ray and VOD.

Abraham Lincoln vs Zombies on DVD Today!

The film destined to be one of the biggest - if not the biggest - Asylum films of the year, Abraham Lincoln vs Zombies, is at last on DVD, Blu-Ray and VOD as of the instant you read this sentence.

The film - whose plot the title pretty much sums up - comes from writer/director Richard Schenkman and stars the great and talented Bill Oberst Jr. (A Haunting in Salem, Born Bad) as the 16th President of the United States, who slings a wicked scythe.

For a more in-depth analysis of what I thought of the film, just scroll down a couple inches. Otherwise, go now and procure your copy of truly one of the most-unique zombie films to date; you won't be sorry, guaranteed.

New Details on The Asylum's Theatrical Release

A few days ago, Dread Central broke the news that The Asylum has a picture in production that will enjoy a limited theatrical release before hitting DVD; at the time, that film was called You Didn't Hold Your Breath.

Well, now Dread Central is again reporting on the film, revealing a name change as well as a few other actors. What was You Didn't Hold Your Breath is now Hold Your Breath. Jared Cohn (Born Bad, Bikini Spring Break) is still directing from a script by Geoff Meed (I Am Omega, 6 Guns), and "30 Rock's" resident beauty Katrina Bowden is still set to grace the screen, but now we have word on a few of her co-stars.


Asylum staple Gerald Webb (A Haunting in Salem, 2 Headed Shark Attack, Battle of Los Angeles, 2012 Ice Age, Zombie Apocalypse, Air Collision and scores more) has secured a role, as has Asylum vet Erin Marie Hogan (6 Guns, Paranormal Entity). Then there are newcomers (to the studio, not the profession) Randy Wayne (Grizzly Park, Dukes of Hazzard: The Beginning, The Haunting of Molly Hartley, To Save a Life) and actor/model Brad Slaughter (1313: UFO Invasion).

Still no release date or detailed plot on this one as of yet, but rest assured as soon as it is known - or Dread Central reports it - I'll have info on it here.


BRACE YOURSELVES: The Asylum's Going Theatrical!!!

The venerable Foywonder over at Dread Central is reporting that The Asylum is currently shooting what is intended to be their first theatrical release, Don't Hold Your Breath, written by Geoff Meed (I Am Omega, 6 Guns) and directed by Looney-Award winner Jared Cohn (Born Bad, upcoming Bikini Spring Break)

It's Dread Central's story so I'll let them break it at the link above, but not before sharing one little tidbit: the film, an original horror story, stars 30 Rock's Katrina Bowden, also of the awesome horror-comedy Tucker and Dale vs. Evil. If you don't know who she is, this is who she is:
Yeah, this is gonna be awesome...

observation notes: ABRAHAM LINCOLN vs ZOMBIES

As the title would indicate, the plot of The Asylum's latest offering, Abraham Lincoln vs Zombies, is pretty straightforward:

"While the Civil War rages on, President Abraham Lincoln must undertake an even more daunting task: Destroying the Confederate Undead."

The results? Extraordinary. ABvZ is a nice, thick slice of revisionist history madness, a gore-weltering, zombie-emancipating, president-bolstering piece of cinematic magnificence, and to miss it would be to give up on all fun in your life.

As always, Committed's notes are spoiler-free, but certain aspects of this tour-de-force must be acknowledged, beginning with the performance by Bill Oberst Jr. (A Haunting in Salem, Princess and the Pony) as our 16th President. Holy crap. Oberst is dead-on (pun totally intended) as Lincoln, giving as textured and encompassing a portrayal as Hal Holbrook's Mark Twain, only, you know, with hella more killing. The cadence of the man, his stature, his stern resolve, moral tenderness and his limitless sense of duty; all are layered into Oberst's towering on-screen persona. There is no other actor who could have pulled this off, period. Oberst is the star here in every sense of the word, the film is his, and he carries it proudly, defiantly, and with expertise.

It is a zombie movie, after all, so something must be said of the effects, which I found to be appropriately for the era and its available kill technology. This isn't the messiest zombie flick of the year, but it is perhaps the most nuanced, and certainly the only one featuring two American Presidents (you're gonna love when you find out who the second one is, trust me).

Overall, I found ABvZ to be a glorious mash-up of Night of the Living Dead and Munich, shot kinda like The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, seriously. Writer/Director Richard Schenkman has turned in a well-researched, well-integrated film that achieves perfect pitch as a period horror film, a burgeoning sub-genre sure to flood the market in the next few years.* Schenkman did his homework, and it shows. This is a smart, exciting, thrilling and ultimately righteous film-going experience. And, as a Southerner, it's possibly the best we've ever been represented in a Civil War movie - as brain-hungry, mindlessly-violent zombies. Enjoy!

* a reminder that I have called dibs on Robert E. Lee vs Bigfoot, or really any concept that involves Rebel troops fighting one or more Sasquatch.

Zombie Lit From an Asylum Screenwriter

Word came this week that writer Brooks Peck, half of the screenwriting team (with Craig Engler) that produced last year's most excellent Zombie Apocalypse - the same team that wrote the SyFy original film Rage of the Yeti with the always-fun Yancy Butler - has released a novelette that sounds like a story right up The Asylum's alley: Zombies on a Plane. Check out the press release below.

"From the writer of Syfy's No. 1 film of 2011:  Zombie Apocalypse

Comes the next great undead adventure: ZOMBIES ON A PLANE

Despite every precaution, despite all the rules and safeguards, a zombie infestation breaks out on board flight 1219. It spreads, row by row, victim by victim, relentlessly converting passengers. The few remaining survivors are trapped 38,000 feet in the air with an army of the undead. 

What readers are saying:

'…a gruesome and anxiety-filled read that tightly recounts an insane struggle against the undead in the confines of an airplane. I'm still pondering what I would do in this situation.'

'This was a fantastic read! Hooks you from the start….'

'I came for the zombies on a plane, sure. But I stayed for the well-observed details that make for an all-too-believable glimpse of how it will be when the Infection comes, spiked with the type of authentic funny that seeps through only when everything goes utterly to hell.'

'3oz of shampoo will not be enough to save you.'

ZOMBIES ON A PLANE is an original novelette, available on Kindle and Nook. Read an excerpt online:

About the Author:
Brooks Peck is a museum curator who specializes in film and popular culture. He wrote two feature films that aired on the Syfy Channel: RAGE OF THE YETI and ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE, which garnered the highest rating for a Syfy original film in 2011."

Zombie Apocalypse was pure perfection, and I also saw Rage of the Yeti a few weeks later, and that there was another dunk in the awesome sauce. So stands to reason, then, that this novelette's probably a pretty righteous read. Hit up the links above and support your local screenwriter.

Whaley House Teaser Trailer!

The first trailer for The Asylum's Haunting of Whaley House is out and can be seen here.

One word...WOW. On DVD July 31st...

inmate profile: Thunder Levin

With the World Premiere of American Warships occurring this Saturday night at 9 p.m. on SyFy (DVD to follow the next Tuesday), for the last few days we here at Committed have been spotlighting the talent behind this upcoming Naval/Alien clash of the titans. Already we've profiled the film's incredible stars, Mario Van Peebles and Carl Weathers, and now we turn to the talent behind the camera, the man responsible for American Warships, writer/director Thunder Levin.

Levin with star Mario Van Peebles

Though he's been in the industry for more than 20 years, Levin didn't come to The Asylum until just last year, when he penned the script for the street-racing actioner 200MPH. Before his work with The Asylum, Levin also wrote and directed the film Mutant Vampire Zombies From the 'Hood, a horror-comedy (obviously) starring 5-time Asylum-alum C. Thomas Howell (War of the Worlds, War of the Worlds 2, The Da Vinci Treasure, The Day the Earth Stopped, The Land That Time Forgot). Levin has also worked as an editor and a still photographer.

American Warships marks Levin's first trip behind the camera for The Asylum, but I'd be willing to bet it won't be his last. Check out Levin's masterpiece-to-date, American Warships, this Saturday, May 19th on SyFy at 9 p.m., then on DVD and Blu-Ray the Tuesday after that, May 22nd.

inmate profile: Carl Weathers

Continuing Committed's spotlighting of the talent behind the next Asylum release, American Warships - on SyFy May 19th at 9 p.m. and then on DVD May 22nd - we turn now to the film's other star, the royally awesome Carl Weathers.

A one-time linebacker for the Oakland Raiders, Weathers' first love was always acting, a passion he turned into a career in the mid-1970's, starting out with small roles in various TV shows and films. But then 1976 happened, and Rocky came along.

Carl Weathers was Apollo Creed, the flashy and charming super-athelete with the confidence of Muhammad Ali and the showmanship of James Brown. Weathers would reprise his iconic role in three sequels before being killed off in part four, a.k.a. one of the most devastating moments of my childhood. 

But Apollo was just the beginning. Weathers parlayed a supporting role here into bigger roles like those he played in Semi-Tough, Death Hunt with Bronson and Lee Marvin, Predator, of course, numerous television programs including a series based on Academy Award Winning film In The Heat of the Night, and the explosive action flick Action Jackson, in which he played the titular man of action. And then there was a little comedy called Happy Gilmore in the mid-90's.

Weathers has been working regularly for nearly 40 years now, and with each passing decade he gets a little more badass. Why Stallone hasn't put this guy in an Expendables movie is beyond me. However, Sly's loss is The Asylum's gain. Watch the culmination of a lifetime's awesomeness when Carl Weathers takes over the screen in The Asylum's American Warships, on SyFy May 19th and DVD May 22nd.

inmate profile: Mario Van Peebles

With a mere ten days before American Warships premieres on the SyFy channel, it's time to turn the Committed spotlight on the film's talent, starting with one of the biggest stars to ever grace an Asylum film, the one and only Mario Van Peebles. 

Van Peebles was born into movies, being the son of famed director/writer Melvin Van Peebles, and as such, there isn't much he hasn't done in the industry: dude can not only act, but write, direct, produce and even pen some of the soundtrack. As an actor, Van Peebles' first role was in his father's landmark film Sweet Sweetback's Baadasssss Song, when he was only 14. Taking a decade to mature and hone his craft, MVP emerged again in the early 80's with notable roles in Coppola's The Cotton Club, Clint Eastwood's Heartbreak Ridge and, of course, Jaws 4: The Revenge. 

It was the 1990's, however, in which MVP started really kicking ass, beginning with my personal favorite of his films, New Jack City in 1991, which also marked his big-screen directorial debut. I love this movie, always have; shit, I had the poster in my room as a teenager, it's probably still rolled up in a closet somewhere at my folks' house. If you haven't seen New Jack City since the early 90's, check it out again stat, that movie holds up in a major way, all Color Me Badd aside.

From New Jack City, it was on: the action-packed western Posse, which he also directed, historical drama Panther, which he also directed, Highlander: The Final Dimension, in which he had awesome hair (to the left), Solo, in which he had no hair (to the right), Michael Mann's Ali, in which he played Malcolm X, Baadasssss! which he also wrote and directed, based on the making of his father's blaxploitation classic, and about a trillion other projects, including 43 episodes of All My Children and this year, We The Party, his latest directorial effort. Then, of course, there's American Warships, in which he plays Captain Winston, commander of an American battleship. Warship, sorry, Warship.

Needless to say, and all pun intended, Mario Van Peebles is a badass. Watch him doing what he does best - kickin' ass - next Saturday, May 19th, at 9 p.m. on the SyFy Channel when The Asylum's American Warships makes its World Premiere.

American Battleship is now American Warships

As you may or may not have heard, a week or so ago Universal decided to sue The Asylum based on their upcoming mockbuster American Battleship, saying it was infringing on the publicity they shelled out for their upcoming disastrous disaster debacle, Battleship. You know, the one based on the board game. Yeah. 

Well, now those cry-babies can mop up their tears with their precious money, because The Asylum has switched the title of their film to American Warships. They even changed the poster as well. 

Bottom line, Universal seems to be projecting their anger at The Asylum, because initial reviews of their $200-million-film are that it's utter and complete shite. But who cares? As The Asylum themselves pointed out, the whole thing has been AWESOME publicity for the film: mainstream outlets internet-wide have been abuzz and The Asylum was the number 1 most-visited Company Page on IMDB - as opposed to Universal's 14 ranking.

The Asylum film - starring the truly dynamic duo of Carl Weathers and Mario Van Peebles, and written and directed by Thunder Levin (writer 200MPH) - hits DVD on May 22nd, following a World Television premiere on SyFy the Saturday before, May 19th.

The Asylum's BIGFOOT Gets a SyFy Premiere Date

Buzz has been building for a while about The Asylum's next SyFy Original Movie, Bigfoot, mostly because of its AMAZING cast: Barry Williams (The Brady Bunch, Mega Piranha), Danny Bonaduce (The Partridge Family), Sherilyn Fenn (Twin Peaks, my dreams beginning in 1989), Howard Hesseman (WKRP in Cincinnati, Head of the Class), Andre Royo (The Wire, Super), Alice Cooper (duh) and Billy Idol (double-duh). Whew; it's gonna be like the wackiest episode of Hollywood Squares ever all up on your television screen. And as if all this star power wasn't enough, the film is being directed by Academy-Award nominated actor and Asylum vet Bruce Davison (MegaFault, Titanic II) from a script by Micho Rutare and Brian Brinkman, the team behind Meteor Apocalypse. This could sincerely be the biggest project yet from The Asylum.

And now we know when we get to lay our greedy little eyes on it: Saturday, June 30th, 9 pm on SyFy. No word on a DVD release as of yet - my guess would be by the end of the year - but have no fear, this being an instant classic, I'm sure SyFy will rerun the shit out of it for decades to come.

2 Headed Shirt Attack

As a 34 year old video store manager/burgeoning screenwriter, I have a lot of movie-themed T-shirts, the majority of them, oddly enough, revolving around Gremlins, but that's neither here nor there; the point is, I know an awesome movie T-shirt when I see one, and this, my friends, is the most awesome movie T-shirt ever, in my heavily-biased opinion:

That's right, y'all, that there's a one-of-a-kind original design inspired by the Asylum smash-hit, 2 Headed Shark Attack, for which I was lucky enough to write the screenplay. The shirt comes to us from the combined efforts of two excellent blogs and friends of Committed's, Guts and Grog, and Critters and Gods, and what's even more amazing than the shirt itself, is that it can be yours for the minor pittance of $15!!! 

Fifteen bucks, what you spend on coffee in a few days, or a night of beers, fifteen measly dollars, and that beauty above shows up at your front door all ready to snuggle against your skin like a Remora. (dibs on Mega Remora, that one just popped up.)

So don't delay owning your piece of cinema history, click here to order your shirt right this very instant, because I have it on good authority that supplies are limited and moving quite rapidly. Don't put off today what you can never get back tomorrow.

A Few New Posters From Upcoming Asylum Flicks

Now, while these posters for upcoming Asylum projects Super Cyclone, Haunting of Whaley House and Golden Winter (yep, we finally know what this one is about...wait for it) haven't been officially released on The Asylum's site, they have turned up on the various DVD-distribution sites my other job - video store ninja - has me frequent. Check 'em out:

Super Cyclone stars AnnaMaria DeMara, Ming Na Wen and Nick Turturro, and is currently slated for an August 28 release.

This one - from Netflix - is a little small, but belongs to The Haunting of Whaley House from writer/director Jose Prendes. The film is out July 31st.

And now the coup de grace, the revelation of the oh-so mysteriously-titled Golden Winter. Regular Committed readers might remember my earlier speculations that the film could be some sort of solar-disaster flick, or perhaps a raunchy sex farce, but once again, The Asylum has defied expectations:

 Aw yeah, The Asylum's mockbusting Snow Buddies. This is gonna be AWESOME. Still no cast or crew details for this one, but it looks like we can expect this one in time for the holidays.