Is there any beloved icon from childhood that filmmakers will not bloodily besmirch by turning into horror movies? Seemingly not.
Last year saw both Winnie the Pooh and the Grinch transformed into killing machines with the films Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey (which is getting a sequel) and The Mean One. Now comes the just-released trailers for Mary Had a Little Lamb and Three Blind Mice, movies whose titles spark rosy memories of kindergarten-era fun but are anything but.
Directed by visual effects artist and animator Jason Arber (Meg 2: The Trench), Mary Had a Little Lamb tracks a radio host and her crew who set out to discover the truth behind some disappearances for a true-crime show and learn that there is far more to discover when they meet Mary and her lamb. The film is distributed by Uncork'd Entertainment and released on digital and DVD this Oct. 3.
Then, in Three Blind Mice, a character named Abi is taken to a cabin in the woods for family-imposed rehab. Little does she and her loved ones know, the Three Blind Mice are more than just a fairy tale, and they may be next up on the menu. Three Blind Mice will be available to watch on digital and DVD Oct. 17.
What's next? Will someone make a terrifying phantasmagoria called Jack and Jill? No, wait, Adam Sandler already did that.
This trend of rebooting child-friendly characters into adult fare was kicked off by prolific British filmmaker Rhys Frake-Waterfield, the director of Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey. The co-founder of Jagged Edge Productions, he set about making a horror movie which featured some of writer A. A. Milne and illustrator E. H. Shepard's classic characters from Hundred Acre Wood after realizing that the 1926 book Winnie-the-Pooh — the collection of stories which introduced Pooh, Piglet, Eeyore, and Christopher Robin — had fallen into the public domain. After the trailer for the micro-budget movie became a viral sensation, the film was given a wide theatrical release in February of this year.
"We always want to pick something that's very hooky," Frake-Waterfield told EW ahead of the movie arriving in theaters. "We want to create a product which instantly stands out and when people see it they go, 'What the hell is that?' I'm a massive horror fan. When I knew that was in the public domain, suddenly the sparks started flying. I was like, I'd love to see that. I'd love to see Winnie-the-Pooh as a horror. So, we thought, okay, let's just go for it."
Watch the trailers for Mary Had a Little Lamb and Three Blind Mice above.