Of all the filmmakers whose body of work I admire David Gordon Green has had the the strangest career trajectory. The Arkansas-born director started out making small scale indie dramas like George Washington, All the Real Girls, and Undertow. Then in 2008 he scored his first bonafide smash hit with the stoner action comedy (and personal fave of yours truly) Pineapple Express. The next year he began directing episodes of the brilliant HBO comedy series Eastbound & Down). In 2011 Green’s directing career took a major hit when his two forgettable studio comedies Your Highness and The Sitter came out and landed with thuds at the box office. Now the talented filmmaker is returning to a project has been attached to for several years but until now has not been able to locate the financing for.
Green’s proposed remake of the 1977 Italian horror classic Suspiria, which first went into development in 2008 and was once mooted to star future Oscar-winner Natalie Portman, is back on track after securing the participation of Crime Scene Pictures, which will finance and produce the film with producers Francesco Melzi d’Eril and Luca Guadagnino. Green will direct from a script he co-wrote with Chris Gebert, a sound mixer and editor on all of his films making his writing debut.
The original Suspiria has long been considered one of the true horror classics of the 1970’s. Dario Argento directed the film and co-wrote the script with his former wife and frequent collaborator Daria Nicolodi. The plot revolved around an American ballet student (Jessica Harper) who travels to Germany to attend a prestigious dance academy and soon finds herself being hunted by an ancient coven of witches. Suspiria was one of the final Italian films to be printed in Technicolor and has been praised throughout the years for its audacious visual style, nightmarish atmosphere, and hypnotic score by progressive rockers Goblin, the group also responsible for creating the soundtrack for George Romero’s Dawn of the Dead (which Argento served as a producer on).
Crime Scene Pictures partners Adam Ripp and Rob Paris said of the news, “We love the style and energy of the original film – and David’s script brilliantly updates the world, presenting a rare opportunity to create an elegant, classic horror film.”
Casting on the Suspiria remake is already in full swing, with filming scheduled to begin in September.