By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood January 21, 2014 at 7:43PM
UPDATED: Lionsgate has bought "Cooties," SpectreVision and Glacier Films' horror-comedy (which Elijah Wood and his production team discuss below) from debut directors Jonathan Milott and Cary Murnion. The buy was negotiated by Lionsgate acquisitions president Jason Constantine along with Lionsgate’s Eda Kowan and Wendy Jaffe. Paradigm's Ben Weiss represented the filmmakers in negotiations. Theatrical and VOD release dates forthcoming.
EARLIER: Midnight movies have always been a staple at the Sundance Film Festival, from "Blair Witch Project" to "Buried." Two of the higher-buzz horror titles at this year's fest, Ana Lily Amirpour's Iran vampire love story "A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night" and horror-comedy "Cooties" with Elijah Wood, Rainn Wilson and "Newsroom" star Alison Pill come from an unlikely source, production company SpectreVision,
Founded by actor-producer Elijah Wood ("Wilfred"), writer-director Daniel Noah ("Max Rose") and director Josh C. Waller ("McCanick"), SpectreVision is the rebranded genre-focused production company originally named The Woodshed in 2010. So far SpectreVision’s slate also includes "Toad Road," which Artsploitation released on theatrical and VOD last October.
The trio have also added a music division, SpectreVision Management, run by Redbird Music Management’s Tim Husom. He seeks to connect filmmakers with such composer clients as Dustin O’Halloran ("Like Crazy," "Marie Antoinette"), German pianist Hauschka, and Johann Johannsson ("Prisoners," Waller's crime drama "McCanick").
And just before their two premieres at Sundance, SpectreVision announced their next project. Principal photography will begin in Medellin, Colombia on February 17, 2014 on "The Boy." Based on the short "Henley" which played in competition at the 2012 Sundance festival, "The Boy" stars 8-year-old Jared Breeze ("Cooties") in the first film of a planned trilogy tracking the childhood of a future serial killer, with installments depicting the character at ages 9, 14 and 18, respectively, and ending with his full transformation to an iconic mass murderer.
"The Boy" is directed by Craig McNeill from a screenplay by McNeill and Clay McLeod Chapman, who created the characters in his novel "Miss Corpus." The duo collaborated on the short. SpectreVision’s Wood, Noah and Waller serve as producers and are partnering with Chiller Films.
In October Spectrevision mounted their first annual SpectreFest in partnership with Cinefamily. They screened the LA premiere of E.L. Katz’s award-winning "Cheap Thrills" "Grand Piano," starring Elijah Wood and John Cusack, and Waller's own "Raze," IFC's horror/action film starring Zoe Bell and Rachel Nichols, due in 2014.