Guillermo Del Toro was 'excited' to work on Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark

  • Bang Showbiz
  • 3 August 2019
Guillermo Del Toro

Guillermo Del Toro

Guillermo Del Toro was "really excited" to work on 'Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark', because he loved the book as a kid

Guillermo Del Toro was "really excited" to work on 'Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark'.

The filmmaker worked as a producer and writer on the upcoming horror movie – which is based on the children's book of the same name by Alvin Schwartz – and has said he was keen to take on the challenge as soon as production company CBS Films approached him.

He said: "When CBS Films approached me about doing this movie, I was really excited. They'd done two screenplays before, but I said, 'Let's start from scratch'. I have this idea that's very relevant to today. It's an interesting way to see how stories shape who we are; about how once you release a story, you can't get it back. Stories are like toothpaste: once it's out, you can't put it back in. We tried to set it in a relevant time. A time in which lies, or stories, were being told to the USA and we were engaged in a war we didn't understand. That's why we chose 1968 – 1969 as a perfect period to set the story."

Guillermo also admits setting the story in the 60s allowed him and director André Øvredal to play with the horror elements of the plot, as modern technologies such as cell phones and Google would make the characters less isolated from the world.

Speaking to SFX magazine, he said: "I think there's a huge amount of people telling stories about right now. Huge! But I think there's beauty in holding an oblique mirror. What were the conditions like back in 1969? Very different, so instead of cellphones, we give them walkie-talkies. They can still communicate, but they can't Google and they can't call 911 from the street.

"But the dynamics that we're portraying in the movie are very much right now. It's about the destructive power of gossip and the fact that gossip can wreck a life very casually."

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