FEATURES | INTERVIEWS | NEWS | FRIGHTFEST | REVIEWS | BOOTH'S BLOG Witchblade - The Series
By James Whittington, Tuesday 14th April 2009 Very few comic book creations transfer to the big or small screen successfully. One only has to recall such duds as The Phantom, Daredevil and The Fat Slags (!) to hammer this point home. But every now and again someone absolutely nails the idea the printed page was trying to bring to life and Witchblade: The Series is such a title. Based on the hit comic book series of the same name, which was co-created by Marc Silvestri, David Wohl, Brian Haberlin, Christina Z and Michael Turner in 1995 the show had to impress a very loyal fan base as well as make the elaborate premise accessible to a mainstream television audience. Of the original team of creators only Marc Silvestri would help bring the show to life alongside new talent Michael Turner. Witchblade: The Series is the story of a New York detective, Sara "Pez" Pezzini. Her search for justice brings her into contact with the Witchblade, an ancient, intelligent, living weapon so powerful it can battle Earth's darkest evil forces. As Sara tries to keep the secret of the Witchblade, do her job and have a personal life, she finds that her most formidable adversary may be the Witchblade itself. Part cop show part fantasy drama, Witchblade was like nothing else on TV when it was first shown in 2001. Casting for the series must have had a tough battle for the producers as they had to find someone who could carry off the main role of Pez with no just on screen charm but someone who could bring strong characterisation to such a complex creation. They found exactly what they were looking for in Yancy Butler; an incredibly versatile actress who had begun her acting career aged seven in the forgettable slasher Savage Weekend. Joining her was Will Lun Lee as Detective Danny Woo, just before he gained international stardom as Colonel Moon in the James Bond blockbuster Die Another Day. Lookout for The Who front man Roger Daltry popping up in the supporting role of Father Dennis Del Toro in a couple of episodes. When the series hit TV screens it created a huge wave of critical approval not only from viewers but critics who enjoyed the cinematic set-ups, intriguing plot strands and state-of-the-art special effects. It was also unpredictable as with most superpowers, wearing the Witchblade comes with great responsibility. It also tackled social issues as well placing itself firmly into fantasy territory building an enviable reputation of being constantly inventive. Though the series ran for only 24 episodes (including a feature length pilot) its impact can still be felt across schedules today. It directly influenced most of the fantasy shows running at the moment, the most obvious being Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. As good ideas never die, Witchblade continues in a Manga style anime cartoon series that has a new owner of the Witchblade armour in each episode and a new movie from Lionsgate simply entitled Witchblade is due out in 2010. Trivia note – Joel Goldsmith, son of Oscar winning composer Jerry Goldsmith created the score for the series. Witchblade: The Series can be seen weekdays on Zone Horror at 18:00 from April 20th.
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Posted on Friday 15th December 2017
Throughout January, Saturday nights at 9pm will be devoted to a Wes Craven Season as Horror Channel presents a retrospective of the late great genre director's career. Four of his supernatural shockers and scream-filled slashers will be broadcast, including the network premieres of serial killer chiller My Soul To Take, his macabre masterpiece The Serpent And The Rainbow, his diabolically electrifying Shocker and the goofy, gory satire The People Under The Stairs.
There are also network premieres for Franck Khalfoun's superior psychological horror Maniac, starring Elijah Wood as a scalp-loving serial killer, David S. Goyer's pulsating possession thriller The Unborn, starring Gary Oldman and Ham...SHARE: READ MORE The Evil In Us and P2 receive their UK TV premieres on Horror Channel in December
Posted on Wednesday 22nd November 2017
Christmas nightmares come early on Horror Channel, as the UK's primary TV destination for genre fans serves up the UK TV premieres of Jason William Lee's slick and stylish modern take on the zombie virus, The Evil In Us and Frank Khalfoun's boundary-pushing crime slasher P2, starring Wes Bentley.
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Posted on Thursday 19th October 2017
November on Horror Channel has a distinctive cutting-edge with a Saturday night prime-time Bloody British Season, celebrating the new wave of British horror movies that reinvigorated the UK horror industry in the early 2000s. There are 9pm network premieres for Neil Marshall's sensational werewolf debut feature Dog Soldiers (2002) (Saturday 11th), his monstrous all-female star cast follow-up The Descent (2005) (Saturday 25th), Christopher Smith's underground ghost train journey through hell, Creep (2004) (Saturday 18th), and Nick Hamm's psychologically gripping The Hole (2001) (Saturday 4th), with Keira Knightley in her first significant film role.
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Posted on Tuesday 3rd October 2017 Works by Stephen King feature heavily this month on Horror Channel, which celebrates the icon's 70th year of one of horror's most prolific and popular authors. There are network premieres for his fearsome feline anthology Cat's Eye, starring James Woods and Drew Barrymore; his darkly weighty cautionary tale Stephen King's Thinner, directed by Tom Holland in his directorial debut; the science-fiction action horror Maximum Overdrive, starring Emilio Estevez; and the 2009 adaptation of his short story Children Of The Corn.
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Posted on Thursday 28th September 2017
Horror Channel FrightFest Halloween 2017 unleashes seven choice shockers for the 7th annual West End Halloween chillorama - a wits-end wallow in all things gruesome, gory and glorious.
This year, the all-day shocktoberfest is at the Empire Haymarket on Sat Oct 28, 2017 and embraces one world, one European and five UK premieres, spanning three continents.
From the emotional making of a low-budget slasher to zombie nightmares, Gothic horrors, an outrageously strange mind cult, a sci-fi alien action extravaganza, a comic strip creature feature and the last word in Killer Clowns, this year-s line-up is an eclectic mix of the quirky, unusual and extreme.
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Posted on Sunday 20th August 2017
Horror Channel has nine prime-time film premieres in September including the UK premiere of Kevin Kolsch and Dennis Widmyer's stunning contemporary occult tale of Hollywood ambition and possession, Starry Eyes.
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Posted on Monday 31st July 2017
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Posted on Tuesday 20th June 2017
Horror Channel has five prime-time Saturday night film premieres in July including the UK premiere of Brad Parker's chilling disaster horror Chernobyl Diaries. The film is written and produced by Oren Peli, who first terrified audiences with his ground-breaking thriller Paranormal Activity.
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Which one will you be staying in for?
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Posted on Friday 19th May 2017
Horror Channel has eight prime-time weekend film premieres in June including the UK premieres of Retreat, Carl Tibbets' 'menage a trois of terror' starring Thandie Newton, Cillian Murphy and Jamie Bell and R.D. Braunstein's smartly gripping I Spit On Your Grave 3: Vengeance Is Mine.
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Posted on Monday 24th April 2017
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Posted on Friday 7th April 2017
Director Julia Ducournau's first-full length outing, Raw is a must-see.
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1. It may not be as gory as you think
Its debut at the Toronto Film Festival last year garnered a wealth of media coverage, due to the films' seemingly graphic content resulting in paramedics reportedly being called after cinemagoers had fainted. When Julia heard the news, she was shocked. "I love mixing genres and I love balancing everything that I do, but I do no...
Posted on Tuesday 21st March 2017
Get ready for hooks, surgical knives and power saws as Horror Channel adds a cutting edge to April's schedule as the UK TV premiere of the Soska Sisters' See No Evil 2 heads up a season of contemporary slasher films.
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See No Evil 2 on the 7th concerns a group of friends who pay a late-night visit to the city morgue to surprise Amy (Danielle Harris) on her birthday.
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