Coming Soon to a Set Near You

Two big productions are headed for Chicago

Producers Brad Fuller, Andrew Form, and Michael Bay, the head guys behind Platinum Dunes, have been taking on horror classics, much to the genre's fans' delight or dismay. Their Texas Chainsaw Massacre introduced "Leatherface" to a whole new generation, and the recent Friday the 13th brought Jason Voorhees back to his 1980 roots, Camp Crystal Lake.

What's next on their agenda? Here's a hint: "One, two, Freddy's coming for you..."

Platinum Dunes will be re-launching the "A Nightmare on Elm Street" series. The film is set to begin shooting in Chicago and the surrounding suburbs this spring.

"We've got the script, and in 12 weeks our goal is to be shooting in Chicago," Fuller told Fangoria Online.

And while the producers have no intention of changing the look of Freddy Kreuger, the series' legendary star, they have not mentioned just who will be taking on the classic character. Robert Englund, who originally brought Freddy to life, has been deemed "too old" at 61 by some fans to reprise the role, and Englund himself has already said he does not want the part.

"There are amazing actors out there who we would love to have in the role," said Fuller. "I don't think you want someone in the part where people can't see Freddy. You have to have somebody who is so good that they can become Freddy, or someone nobody's heard of who can really pull off the character."

Another movie in the works for Chicago is The Trial of the Chicago 7, based on the trials of protesters at the 1968 Democratic National Convention. Famed director Stephen Spielberg is set to take on the project, and rumors of casting have included Will Smith, Kevin Spacey, and Philip Seymour Hoffman. The only actor confirmed is Sacha Baron Cohen, who will play Abbie Hoffman.

Deadline Hollywood, however, reports that Spielberg will be delaying the start date due to the possibility of a Screen Actors Guild strike. SAG and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) have been in negotiations since November over a new SAG contract. (SAG's current contract expires in June.) So far, the poor economy and resistance from some members have kept the union from protesting.

Said one Chicago 7 insider, "Knowing that he [Spielberg] had to be finished by July left him too much up against it, so he had to make a decision whether to give the pic a firm start date of April, which he didn't feel ready for."

Matt Bartosik, editor of Off the Rocks' next issue and "between blogs" blogger, is only mildly familiar with Freddy, Jason, and Michael.

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