UPDATED - "We're Not Going To Fuck It Up." STAKE LAND's Jim Mickle Remaking Jorge Michel Grau's WE ARE WHAT WE ARE

Todd Brown, Founder and Editor
*Now updated with an exclusive audio interview with director Jim Mickle.

You want an intriguing collision of talent seemingly tailor made for us here at Twitch? Well, here one is for you.

Jim Mickle has long been a favorite here at Twitch, his debut feature Mulberry Street being a surprising little overachiever of a picture while we publicly declared his 2010 reunion with writing partner and star Nick Damici the best American horror film of the year. Winning the Midnight Madness award at the Toronto International Film Festival certainly helped make that argument.

The Mickle / Damici combo is one of the most vital in American genre film today, the duo tapping into a very gritty, 70's indie vibe in their work. We've been anxiously awaiting whatever the duo would do next from the moment that Stake Land's closing credits finished scrolling up the screen and up until very recently it appeared that the next project was going to be the long talked about adaptation of Joe R Lansdale's Cold In July.

But the Mickle / Damici combo is only one end of the collision we're talking about here. At the other end is Mexico's Jorge Michel Grau.

Grau made his feature debut in Cannes of 2010 with the gritty cannibal film Somos Lo Que Hay (We Are What We Are). Made as part of a film-school backed program that finances the debut feature for one of their alumni with the crew made up of current students We Are What We Are - like Mickle's work - functions best when it imbues its harshest genre elements with an unflinching realism. And while Mickle was winning the top genre prize in Toronto, Grau's film was busy taking the top award at Fantastic Fest.

Having had the chance to spend time with both Mickle and Grau I feel quite comfortable saying that the two are kindred spirits, not just in terms of filmmaking style but also in personality. they'd like each other rather a lot if they had the chance to hang out and now they're going to because it has just been announced at the European Film Market that Jim Mickle is going to direct an English language version of We Are What We Are.

"We're not going to fuck this up," says Mickle. "I just finished a first draft of it with Nick Damici, and we're taking it in a very cool new direction that I'm quite stoked about. I'm not usually a fan of international "remakes", but this one has so many possibilities for trying out new ideas while honoring the Mexican film, and hopefully creating something that can play hand in hand with Jorge's film. I'm hoping it can also bring awareness to the original and not aim to make it obsolete as a lot of retreads wind up doing. Couldn't be happier with what we have so far! Think Winter's Bone with cannibals..."

If you're wondering what this means for Cold In July, fret not. That's still gearing up to go as well but with the cast not available until late in 2012 the goal is to shoot We Are What We Are first - photography is currently scheduled to begin in June - and then roll directly into Cold In July.

Memento Films will be launching international sales for Mickle's We Are What We Are at the European Film Market. Uncorked Productions' Andrew D. Corkin (MARTHA MARCY MAY MARLENE, AFTER SCHOOL) and Rodrigo Bellott (SEXUAL DEPENDENCY) will produce alongside MFI's Nicholas Shumaker (ANOTHER EARTH, ME @THE ZOO) and Belladonna Productions' Linda Moran and Rene Bastian, who produced Mickle's first two films.  MFI's Nicholas Kaiser will co-produce.  Development was financed by newly minted shingle The Zoo, headed by financiers Brett Fitzgerald, Mo Noorali, and industry vet Jack Turner.

Updated - 2/11/2012
Click below for a quick interview with director Jim Mickle hot off the press, in which the burgeoning genre director talks to TWITCH about his upcoming version of WE ARE WHAT WE ARE with Sean Smithson.

For more with Mickle, listen to the THE NIGHT CREW's all-STAKE LAND episode, with Jim Mickle, writer/star Nick Damici, and cast members Connor Paolo, Danielle Harris, Sean Nelson, and Michael Cerveris right HERE.


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  • Frankie Machine

    This is great news. I've been a fan of Nick Damici in particular ever since Mulberry Street. He's one of the most underrated actors I can think of. The guy looks like Charles Bronson and acts like Mickey Rourke.

    The "Winter's Bone with cannibals" comment is extremely promising too. I really hope they're going for a similar aesthetic vision. The visuals in that film were brilliant in all their worn-out ugliness.

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