You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Barker set to rule U’s ‘Tortured Souls’

Helmer returns to o'see demon-for-wife swap pic

A correction was made to this article on Dec. 10, 2003.

In a surprise move, horror aficionado turned painter Clive Barker is returning to the director’s chair after an eight-year absence, inking a pact to helm Universal’s horror pic “Tortured Souls.”

Barker last directed 1995 feature “Lord of Illusions,” a Scott Bakula starrer released by MGM.

Tortured Souls is Barker’s own line of action figures, which debuted at the Intl. Toy Fair in Gotham in February 2001. Released in limited numbers last July by “Spawn” creator Todd McFarlane’s McFarlane Toys, the monster figures promptly sold out.

McFarlane’s company also produces action figures of icons from movies, music and comicbooks, including “Shrek” and “Austin Powers,” as well as rockers KISS and Metallica. McFarlane will consult on the script and produce as well.

“We come from very different areas: I come from books and paintings, he comes from toys and comics,” Barker said of his collaboration with McFarlane. “In the middle, we meet quite nicely, because we both love these kinds of movies, and both of us have a pretty encyclopedic knowledge of them, so we can always be referencing the things that really work for us.”

Each of the six grisly Tortured Souls — Talisac, Lucidique, Scythe-Meister, Agonistes, Mongroid and Venal Anatomica — was sold with a chapter of an original Barker-penned storyline. The combined chapters form a novella outlining the Souls’ origin.

For the bigscreen adaptation, Barker said, the “Souls” storyline centers on a man who decides he wants to be rid of his wife in favor of a more interesting life. The man “exchanges” his wife for a demon goddess from another world, throwing her into a shadowy world of monsters — one from which she must escape and return to his everyday world to rescue their child and vanquish the demon.

Barker, repped by ICM, and McFarlane will produce “Tortured Souls,” and Barker’s Seraphim Films veepee Joe Daley will co-produce with McFarlane exec Terry Fitzgerald. U veepee Dylan Clark supervises for U.

More Film

  • Black Panther

    'Black Panther,' 'Crazy Rich Asians,' 'Westworld' Among Costume Designers Guild Winners

    “Crazy Rich Asians,” “The Favourite” and “Black Panther” walked away with top honors at the 21st annual Costume Designers Guild Awards Tuesday night, the final industry guild show before the Oscars on Feb. 24. “The Favourite” and “Black Panther” are up for the Oscar this year, along with “The Ballad of Buster Scruggs,” “Mary Poppins [...]

  • WGA Writers Contract Talks

    Talent Agents, WGA Achieve Progress in Second Round of Talks

    Hollywood talent agents and the Writers Guild of America have achieved some progress at their second negotiating session over agency regulations, according to sources close to the talks. The two sides met Tuesday, two weeks after their first meeting resulted in both sides criticizing each other, followed by the WGA holding a trio of spirited [...]

  • Aaron Paul

    Film News Roundup: Aaron Paul Honored by Sun Valley Film Festival

    In today’s film news roundup, Aaron Paul is honored, Bruce Berman is re-upped at Village Roadshow, and Paola Mendoza and Abby Sher get a book deal. FESTIVAL HONORS The Sun Valley Film Festival has selected Idaho native and three-time Emmy winner Aaron Paul as the winner of its Pioneer Award, presented by Variety for his [...]

  • Olivia Munn]EMILY'S List Pre-Oscars Brunch, Inside,

    Olivia Munn Says Brett Ratner Called Her Before His 'Howard Stern' Apology

    Olivia Munn is setting the record straight about standing up to “Rush Hour” director Brett Ratner, whom she alleges sexually harassed her over a decade ago. During a panel discussion at the Emily’s List pre-Oscars brunch at the Four Seasons Beverly Hills Tuesday morning, Munn revealed that Ratner called her in 2011 after he denied [...]

  • Flesh Out review

    Berlin Film Review: 'Flesh Out'

    Ignore the awful English-language title: “Flesh Out” is an emotionally rich, sensitively made film about a young woman in Mauritania forced to gain weight in order to conform to traditional concepts of well-rounded beauty before her impending marriage. Strikingly registering the sensations of a protagonist living between the dutiful traditions of her class and the [...]

  • Marighella review

    Berlin Film Review: 'Marighella'

    Does Brazil need a film that openly advocates armed confrontation against its far-right government? That’s the first question that needs to be asked when discussing “Marighella,” actor Wagner Moura’s directorial debut focused on the final year in the life of left-wing insurrectionist Carlos Marighella during Brazil’s ruthless military dictatorship. For whatever one might think of [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content