Clive Barker‘s Hellraiser, based on a written story of his (The Hellbound Heart), has been dormant for quite some time. While the first four, arguably, are loved by fans, the movies since have not had quite the same level of fanatic love, excepting only the most diehard lovers of the series. The movies began to be milked (there were two movies released in 2005) in a manner more sacrilegious than Pinhead himself, and 2011 saw the release of Hellraiser: Revelations, a movie so quickly and cheaply produced, longtime Pinhead actor Doug Bradley simply refused to participate. It was released quietly for one day, at one theater, and then shoveled onto DVD; it’s rumored (with all signs pointing to ‘true’) that the movie was only made so Dimension Films did not lose the copyright to the franchise, and could make a bigger, more expensive film later on. Needless to say, it was considered bad. Now Dimension Films is giving Hellraiser another chance with Hellraiser: Judgement, and the first photo has been released.
The film will not feature Doug Bradley as Pinhead, nor will Clive Barker be involved in any capacity; this may get some fans worried, but director Gary Tunnicliffe (formerly a special effects artist on other Hellraiser projects) mentioned in an interview with Bloody Disgusting that the movie was his passion project; while Judgement was not originally pitched as a film in the series proper, he had imagined it as one.
“Judgment was always a Hellraiser project (concept), but I didn’t think I would have a shot at directing a Hellraiser movie, so I removed the Hellraiser elements and tried to get Judgment made independently. I met with several producers but they found the material SO outlandish and disturbing they always balked…and usually asked if I would instead be interested in directing a movie about some teens being chased by a masked killer.”
“This is very much a Hellraiser movie connected at the very core. It wasn’t a script that was adapted in anyway; this script was conceived, written and re-written as a Hellraiser movie. It is different from Hellraiser movies before, since it involves a new mechanism in conjunction with the box for the gathering of souls, and that introduces us to these new characters. But it still very much operates within the mythos of a ‘world within our world’ that I have always felt is the mainstay of Clive’s (Barker) work.”
Pinhead will be played by Paul T. Taylor, featured in the photo below. The character next to him is the new main villain known as The Auditor, who will play a large role in the film. The Auditor ‘passes judgement’ on his victims. The character’s casting call described him as “All business, very matter-of-fact. Clearly not of this earth. He learns of your sins, your transgressions, your evils, and takes careful note of them before passing them on to the Assessor for judgment. Think of him more as an accountant from Hell…”
Hellraiser: Judgement is currently in post-production; a release date is not available at this time.