The latest addition to the Hellraiser franchise is currently in the post-production phase, which means fans of the long-running series can expect to start seeing more teasers and trailers for the upcoming Hellraiser: Judgement. The writer and director for the new film, Gary Tunnicliffe, proudly presents images of two new cenobites, demons to add to Pinhead’s growing legion of minions, as he opens up about what fans can expect from Hellraiser: Judgement and from Pinhead himself.
Hellraiser: Judgement Introduces The Surgeon And The Butcher
Other than a couple of short films, Hellraiser: Judgement will be the second Hellraiser film to be written by Gary and the first film which he has directed, so it’s easy to see why Tunnicliffe is so excited about the film and about introducing some new demons into the mix, via Bloody Disgusting. While the film boasts a multi-talented cast, headlined by A Nightmare on Elm Street‘s Heather Langenkamp, the Hellraiser series has always been more about the demons. Of those demons, the most famous, of course, is Pinhead. That character was brought to life so eloquently and with such passion by Doug Bradley that it has been difficult to continue the series without the famed actor, but, sadly, Hellraiser: Judgement has had to move on without Doug. In his place, Gary has recast the Pinhead character with Paul T. Taylor (Super, Sin City).
Joining the new Pinhead in Hellraiser: Judgement is The Surgeon, a creation of Tunnicliffe’s own dark imagination. There are basically two kinds of cenobites in Hellraiser mythology: those who act like beasts, shredding their victims apart with unadulterated chaos, and those demons who act with more finesse, taking great care and pleasure in causing the greatest degree of pain. The Surgeon belongs to that latter category, using the tools of his trade to vivisect one victim on his rather gruesome looking operating table.
The film introduces The Butcher as well and, as might be suspected, he belongs to that former category. The Butcher, armed with a giant scythe, goes after that same Hellraiser: Judgement victim with reckless abandon. In deliberate and determined strikes, The Butcher slices chunks from the man’s back, as he seeks to bring him down.
The synopsis for Hellraiser: Judgement reads as follows.
“Detectives Sean and David Carter are on the case to find a gruesome serial killer terrorizing the city. Joining forces with Detective Christine Egerton, they dig deeper into a spiraling maze of horror that may not be of this world.”
Gary Tunnicliffe On Creating Hellraiser: Judgement
In a new interview with Dread Central, Tunnicliffe reveals that being brought in on Hellraiser: Judgement has been a dream come true, and it’s a responsibility he takes to heart. Even so, Gary reveals that Dimension wasn’t crazy about just how dark the tone of the original script was for the tenth Hellraiser film. He adds that studio heads at Dimension were open to working with him, helping Gary to reach a compromise between what he wanted as writer and director with what the studio thought was more in line with their name.
Tunnicliffe says he was touched by the way everyone involved with Hellraiser: Judgement from financial backers to the cast and crew all gave from their hearts in an effort to make the best possible film.
“My producer, Mike Leahy, was there daily fighting the [good] fight, the Oklahoma crew gave it everything, and the City and Film Commission helped out beyond belief with locations and police support,” says Mr. Tunnicliffe. “Everywhere we went people gave generously and with a smile, from the hotel staff cutting deals to the local Jaguar dealership that let us use a $100K car for free! And from call ’till wrap the cast and crew just busted their collective a***s with enthusiasm.”
Gary says shooting on Hellraiser: Judgement was an experience he’ll always cherish, adding that he hated to see it come to an end.
“I’m sure they thought that what we were shooting at times was crazy, but everyone seemed to dig it, and I always felt they had my back. I was so sad to get to the final scene and hear, ‘That’s a wrap!’ On a personal level it was the culmination of a lifetime dream, from the kid who sat in the cinema in 1987 and had his life changed [by Clive Barker’s original film] to finding himself thirty years later on the set directing [one].”
Hellraiser: Judgement will be a 2017 direct to video release.
[Image via Gary Tunnicliffe/Dimension Films]