Antonio Pérez‘ Seville-based Maestranza Films, producer of Benito Zambrano’s “Solas” and “The Sleeping Voice”), and Kiko Martinez Madrid-based Nadie Es Perfecto, the company behind Álex de la Iglesia’s “The Bar,” have teamed to co-produce a remake of Bigas Luna’s cult horror modern classic “Anguish” (1987).
Spain-born but based in Los Angeles, Spanish director F. Javier Gutiérrez is attached to direct. Gutiérrez’ second feature, horror “Rings” –part of the several remakes saga starting with Gore Verbinski’s “The Ring”– nabbed $83 million worldwide.
Luna’s original “Anguish” followed an ophthalmologist with a bizarre hobby –collecting eyes– and a dominant mother. Following his mother’s orders, he goes to a movie-theater, where he meets two friends. The feature they are watching, however, didsrupts their perception of reality.
One of the greatest ever Spanish directors, who gave Penélope Cruz and Javier Bardem their big break in “Jamón, Jamón,” Luna helmed some English-language features – Dennis Hopper’- starrer “Reborn” (1981) and “Anguish,” starring Zelda Rubinstein and Michael Lerner – which hit the biggest box office of his entire career in international markets –Dennis Hopper’- starring “Reborn” (1981) and “Anguish,” starred by Zelda Rubinstein and Michael Lerner. Bigas Luna died in 2013.
“‘Anguish’ is a complex and terrifying film of highly hot contemporaneity reflecting on cinema and a love letter to cinema theaters versus the current home-viewing preponderance cultivated by streamers,” Pérez said to Variety.
Sam Raimi’s Ghost House, alongside Vertigo Entertainment. tried to remake Luna’s “Anguish” remake in 2009. But the project never came to fruition.
“We’re keeping all the psychology behind the characters, the complex and destructive mother-son relationship, the symbolism and the ‘movie-within-a-movie’ set up,” Gutiérrez told Variety, adding: “I’m focusing on new visuals, a modern take on the events inside the theater, including the murders, reworking the female characters, and adding to the suspense.
According to the film’s producers, the English-language movie will have an international cast and should be ready to shoot by Winter 2022.
Director F. Javier Gutiérrez is repped by UTA.