Fright Night Screenwriter Talks Remake Inspiration and the Recently Released Trailer
05.16.11 by Ryan
Screenwriter Marti Noxon cannot escape vampires.
Having written for the Buffy the Vampire Slayer TV show, Noxon was pulled back into the vampire genre for the Craig Gillespie-directed remake of Fright Night and had the responsibility of differentiating the remake from the 1985 original. In a recent interview with Collider, Noxon explained her inspiration for the remake.
I don’t know why, but I had a very strong feeling about this one. Maybe because I’d become obsessed with this idea of a vampire who appears mundane and working-class. Also, I had spent time in Las Vegas, in the suburbs, and had just been so impressed with what a good place that would be to be a vampire, ‘cause that’s how I think. That’s just how my brain works. I was like, "My god, this would be awesome, if you were a vampire ‘cause there’s are all these empty houses and people come and go."
Despite the original movie being over 25 years old, it still has a rabid fan base, yet Noxon is hoping that the movie will be able to surprise audiences.
When I was doing Buffy, I asked [creator] Joss [Whedon], "Why did you call it Buffy the Vampire Slayer?," and he said, "Low expectations are always really good. When people hear that, they’re going to think it’s one thing. Hopefully, you can surprise them with more character development and more humor." I had the same feeling about Fright Night, that we could go in a little bit under the radar and hopefully make it a more layered experience than people expect.
That surprise element may be a little harder to accomplish now that the first trailer for Fright Night has debuted. Noxon admitted that she was initially disappointed with what was revealed in it.
Of course, when I saw the trailer that was released on Friday, I was like, "Aww, lots of time went into figuring out a couple of those moments." But then, I also understand the commercial imperative. And, there’s still a lot of good surprises left. I tempered my initial reaction, which was, "Nooo! Days and weeks went into one of those things." But no, I get it. We need to give them something to work with, and they didn’t give everything away. They actually didn’t give a lot away. David Tennant is all over the movie, but not in the trailer. There’s lots of fun things that remain. I comforted myself.
Noxon added that the trailer had only "a couple of plot twists" but "not the really important ones." However, for those that had seen the original Fright Night the only real surprise — outside of the reinterpretation of the movie's characters from the original to the remake — was the hint of an action sequence in a truck, which Noxon says was inspired from yet another 80's vampire movie.
I’m also a huge fan of the much more gritty films from the genre. I’m a huge fan of Kathryn Bigelow’s Near Dark. There’s an incredible sequence with a truck in that movie, and without entirely ripping it off, I was thinking about that and feeling like it had been a long time since I’d seen a mash-up of a true action sequence that wasn’t just about the power of the vampire, but real-life objects. So, I like to think of it as an homage to her great work in that movie.
While Noxon has some trepidation about the trailer, the screenwriter said she had the most satisfying experience working on Fright Night since working on Buffy. "Maybe me and vampires is something I’ve just got to surrender to," Noxon added.
Fright Night opens Aug. 19th and stars Anton Yelchin, Colin Farrell, and Toni Collette.