If you’re under a certain age, the title Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark doesn’t mean much to you. But if you’re in the middle to older portion of Generation X or a younger Baby Boomer, you might have been terrified by this weird little TV movie that first aired in 1973. In the film a woman and her husband move into a creepy old house and get terrified by little demon dudes who are kind of silly looking but actually pretty goddamned creepy. It doesn’t really make sense – a TV movie with a bunch of little dudes in fursuits should not be able to give a whole generation nightmares, but it happened. Loyal Chewers know the movie as Jeremy Smith wrote up the Homunculus in our Forgotten Monsters of Filmland series.
Now the film is getting remade (yes, the Remake Train has entered Semi-Obscure TV Movie Station!), but before you fret allow for some hope: the script is being written by Guillermo del Toro (who is also producing) and Matthew Robbins, with whom he co-wrote Mimic. And it’s being directed by comic artist and filmmaker and CHUD message boarder Troy Nixey. And this site’s own Nick Nunziata, who has been working with Troy on stuff for quite some time, is going to be involved as well*.
Apparently the monster design hasn’t begun, but considering you have del Toro and Nixey (whose short film Latchkey’s Lament had some really terrific art design) on board, expect the beasts to look pretty cool.
And even if all of this fills you with remake ennui, you can at least look forward to the inevitable DVD release of the original, which is only available on VHS (legally) in the United States.
*Possibly as the Kim Darby locator/wrangler.