Friday, March 6, 2015


"Thirteen Ghosts" (2001)
Directed by Steve Beck
    I feel an opportunity has been missed. If it were up to me, I would have re-released the film, "Thirteen Ghosts" in theaters, last year.
Theatrical re-releases are reserved for classics, but I'm convinced that with the right approach to marketing, a film that is regarded as being simply "so-so", could be a hit.
This is a film that I would have done this with. It has all the elements of a hit, without actually being a classic.
   For those who missed this re-make of William Castle's film of the same title, here's a recap:
   Eccentric millionaire Cyrus Kriticos hired a crew of Ghostbusters to catch ghosts for him. At his mansion, these captured ghosts are imprisoned in rooms with barrier spells. Cyrus needs 13 ghosts to complete a process that will open the "Eye of Hell". After getting killed during the capture of ghost #12, the Cyrus Kriticos estate informs his only living relative, nephew Arthur Kriticos, that he has inherited the haunted home (minus learning that it is filled with ghosts). Arthur and his two kids (along with their wise cracking nanny) go to check out their new place.
   Now, we would not have much of a movie if these imprisoned ghosts weren't accidentally set free from their cells to wreak havoc in the house. So...surprise! That happens.
   With the help of Cyrus' psychic assistant, everyone spends the rest of the film trying to survive nasty ghost attacks. The thing is, they can't see the ghosts unless they are wearing special "spectral glasses", which thankfully are provided courtesy of psychic assistant and comic relief, Dennis Rafkin (Mathew Lillard).
   "Thirteen Ghosts" is not as good as the premise suggests it should be, but not as bad as review website, Rotten Tomatoes says it is.
   This leads to my big idea: "Thirteen Ghosts" could have been re-released last year (2014), in "Real D" 3D. This film would have been perfect for 3D. If you watch it while picturing it in 3D, it makes it feel more exciting. It already has the look of a 3D film.
   I would add one small detail: When the film begins, have this sentence written on the screen: THIRTEEN YEARS AGO...
The very idea of re-releasing it 13 years later is such an awesome gimmick. You could have called it: The Unlucky 13 Year Anniversary.
   I will never get to see this re-release happen, but maybe this idea may inspire you to re-visit "Thirteen Ghosts".
Perhaps a Mathew Lillard Double Feature with "Scooby-Doo" (2002)? Mathew starred as Shaggy in this live action Scooby feature, the following year.
Fun Fact: In 1985, there was an animated spin-off series called, "The 13 Ghosts of Scooby-Doo".
   My final addition to this pitch is that it would have given us the opportunity to collect action figures. The ghosts in this film are awesome. They all have a unique look, name and back story. They would make excellent action figures.
   Let's face it, "Thirteen Ghosts" action figures, means making a doll for the ghost known as: "The Angry Princess". She is the nude female ghost. It should be quite obvious that she is my favorite ghost in the film. It's hard for me to be scared of this ghost though, because it's difficult for me to maintain eye contact with her.
   Can we make a film about just THAT ghost?

(Artwork by Isaac Keith Martinez)

1 comment:

Brandon Early said...

Gratuitous female nudity enhances any viewing experience.

Expounding on your idea, that thirteenth anniversary re-release in 3-D could most probably have been marketed as ILLUSION-O just like for William Castle's 1960 original. Movie-goers were given "Ghost Viewers", which were basically just a modification of old-school red and blue anaglyph 3-D glasses. There was no dimensional effect, but the colored lenses allowed viewers to "see" the ghosts that weren't otherwise visible. I'm sure that "now-you-see-em-now-you-don't" gag could somehow be rendered by manipulating modern 3-D technology. There's just no sense of old school showmanship any more. :(