Eli Roth lines up ‘Cotton,’ ‘Species’

Filmmaker confirms details of sci-fi venture

MORELIA, Mexico — With the press tour for “Inglourious Basterds” winding down, star Eli Roth is switching gears as he readies the push for Louisiana exorcism pic “Cotton” and hammers out the script for his first sci-fi venture — “Endangered Species.”

Speaking at Mexico’s Morelia Film Festival, Roth said he will be showing “Cotton” to Sundance in “a couple of weeks” with hopes of preeming it there in January. Roth produced pic with Strike Entertainment and director Daniel Stamm.

With plans to finish the script for “Species” in October, the no-holds-barred horror helmer is also penning “Thanksgiving,” a film whose faux trailer appeared in Quentin Tarantino’s “Grindhouse.”

Ideally, Roth would like to shoot both back to back.

At the moment, however, “Endangered Species” comes first. As writer, director and producer, Roth is keeping the plot of “Species” hush- hush for now. Roth stressed that he does not plan on reusing actors and that the only thing in common for the two will be his “sick sense of humor.”

“I haven’t been this excited about an idea since the first ‘Hostel,’ ” said Roth, referring to his breakout hit as director.

However, he added that he ran the script by Tarantino for notes. “Quentin is the greatest story editor you could have, and I trust him implicitly,” he said.

Roth is making “Species” with Eric Newman (“Children of Men”) and their shingle Arcade.

Newman and Roth are also developing a script with hip-hopper RZA from the Wu-Tang Clan for the rapper’s first foray into cinema — kung fu pic “The Man With the Iron Fist.”

“He’s been studying directing under Quentin pretty intensely,” he added. “He’s definitely ready.”

Noting “a lot of interest” in the project, Roth said he’s waiting for the script to be “100%” before shopping it around.

The scary movie man also noted that while a third “Hostel” pic is underway, he is not involved in any way.

“I’ll be as surprised by it as everyone else,” said Roth.

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