[Banner Image Courtesy Gage Skidmore under a Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike license]
In partnership with Director Edgar Wright, Actor/writers Nick Frost and Simon Pegg have upended the Zombie Romantic Comedy (Shawn of the Dead, 2004), the Buddy Cop Comedy (Hot Fuzz, 2007), and the Alien Invasion Comedy (The World’s End, 2013) with their Cornetto Trilogy.
Now Pegg and Wright are setting up their own production company, Stolen Picture. And their first announced release may do the same for the Harry Potter “Unsuspecting Kid Goes to Weird Boarding School” genre. Slaughterhouse Rulez, co-written by Crispian Mills and Henry Fitzherbert and directed by Mills, introduces a “wide-eyed new boy” to a very British and very ancient boarding school.
Like Harry Potter … with added blood, laughs, and despoiling of nature. (Photo courtesy Harry Potter Official Facebook page)
Instead of the Harry Potter formula of magic, dragons, and long-buried secrets, Slaughterhouse Rulez introduces a bit of Hellmouth opening to the school routine. According to Deadline Hollywood, the everyday horrors of a British boarding school education are forgotten after “a controversial frack site on prize school woodland causes seismic tremors, a mysterious sinkhole and an unspeakable horror is unleashed.”
Pegg and Frost may get the most of the initial publicity for Rulez, but co-writer and director Crispian Mills has a rather colorful history himself. The son of actress Haley Mills, he wrote and directed Pegg’s 2014 movie A Fantastic Fear of Everything. And before turning to writing and directed, Mills led the British band Kula Shaker.
So if nothing else, Stolen Picture’s first production has an interesting take on the usual school story.