This just in: Michael Bay wants to direct a horror film.
“I have a great fantasy – that I will probably make a reality – of directing my own self-financed horror movie,” Bay told The Hollywood Reporter in a recent interview. “I love this genre because the movie is the star.”
But will audiences love the idea of a Michael Bay fright flick? For die-hard horror fans, the answer to that question is most likely a “no.” Bay’s prior involvement in the genre understandably hasn’t endeared him to those who consider themselves hardcore aficionados, with his Platinum Dunes shingle being responsible for a string of heavily-criticized remakes starting in the mid-noughties. From 2003’s “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre” to 2010’s “A Nightmare on Elm Street,” these remakes never failed to draw scorn – or, it bears mentioning, to rake in the dough.
While Bay didn’t actually direct any of those films, their slick production values felt perfectly in line with the director’s brand, so often criticized for an emphasis on hollow effects trickery over good storytelling or well-drawn characters. For many fans and critics, these remakes were produced merely to exploit old titles for financial gain, with little consideration given to capturing the qualities that made the originals such classics in the first place. And despite his actual level of involvement in the finished product, Bay was inevitably seen as the heartless man behind the curtain, directing it all.
For all his seeming earnestness regarding horror’s influence on him during his years growing up in Los Angeles (“Some of my favorites include ‘The Exorcist’ and ‘The Shining,'” he told THR), Bay’s association with so many divisive horror films over the last decade remains undeniable – and while he could well capture a more mainstream audience with any future endeavors in the genre (Bay is one of the few directors who counts as a star in his own right), it’ll be tough for him at this point in his career to win over those fans who, rightly or wrongly, still feel stung by his brazen insistence on digging up their most sacred horror cows.
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