The farther he gets from his indie roots, the closer Kevin Smith seems to be inching back towards that filmmaking methodology, only without the worry of having to max out credit cards to bring the projects to light. Since announcing at the end of 2012 that Clerks III was going to be his last film, Smith has almost completed a feature that wasn’t even fully conceived of at the time, with another more bizarre project lined up after that. Add another off-center concept to that pile, as Smith announced he recently finished teaming up with comedy writer and podcaster Andy McElfresh in co-writing a Christmas horror anthology called Comes the Krampus! which will be directed by several members of the SModCo crew.
Instead of using Santa Claus as their jumping off point, they decided to use the "Scandinavian/German Kid-Eating Christmas creature known as The Krampus," which Smith himself announced on his blog Silent Bob Speaks. The brainstorming session that spawned the idea occurred during the Christmas episode of McElfresh’s Edumacation podcast (which you can listen to here), and Smith is calling it their version of George A. Romero and Stephen King’s Creepshow.
Despite being such an early unofficial announcement, Smith still unloaded a slew of details about the project, all of which are subject to change of course. The 99-page script tells five different tales, and Smith will be directing a Gothic horror installment called "Mask Maker," while his wife Jennifer Schwalbach will direct "The Bad Babysitter," which will serve as the framing device. Jason Mewes will get his directing on with the extraordinary-sounding "Hitler’s Krampus." McElfresh will take on the "SO fucked up" segment "The Krampus vs. The 3rd Grade," and Smiths’ oft-used script supervisor Carol Banker will helm another off the wall episode called "The Proposal." Smith promises Scott Mosier will be part of the acting talent, and says Hollywood Babble-On co-host Ralph Garman will be in every segment.
With the animal-friendly serial killer thriller Tusk soon to be wrapped up, Smith hopes to get Clerks III going into production on April 7, and wants to fit the Krampus shoot soon after Clerks III is complete. They figure it will cost around $2 million, but budget meetings still need to happen.
Comes the Krampus is the first time Smith has co-written a script with someone, but it’s the third screenplay he’s developed based on a conversation had during a podcast. Tusk was the first, and his longshot thriller Helena Handbasket is the second. While it might be worth pondering where that project would fit into Smith’s timeline, but considering it concerns "mankind and Hell vs. Rapture Jesus," there’s no guarantee that it will ever grace us with its presence.
What do you guys think about SModCo heading into the dark territories of holiday horror anthologies? A present under the tree or a lump of coal?