Just when we thought Disney wasn’t creating anything new comes along this study involving making more realistic robot gazes. Must admit from looking at the video below it looks like something out of the movie They Live. You can see the box art to the right, now compare to the image below for the robot gaze study. Yeah, it’s skeleton time!
…the new robot can imitate human facial movements, specifically blinking and subtle head movements. A sensor in its chest area (covered by a shirt, because the face is unsettling enough, thanks) alerts the robot when to turn and face a person in front of it, and its eye movements shift from direct eye contact to the rapid eye movements known as saccades. It also moves slightly up and down to mimic breathing.
Despite a lack of interest in making new music from many artists, primarily because the money these days is in touring not selling new albums, I’m always excited to hear when artists do create new music.
Including those who have done famous movie music.
Although John Carpenter will be mostly remembered as the horror director for Halloween (1978) and The Thing and other cinematic cult gems like Escape From New York, his musical work should also be highlighted. Recently, I shared a post on a Carpenter-like theme inspired mashup (see: Halloween meets Ozzy Osbourne’s Crazy Train cover)
Carpenter is still writing and composing music. Two new tracks, “Skeleton” and “Unclean Spirit” are not part of any movie, just Carpenter and his son Cody freewheel burning.
John Carpenter is releasing a new album in the fall and has dropped two new tracks today. The horror icon has a 12-inch vinyl single containing the two tracks as well. Many variants of it are being released, and are available for preorder right now. These are a collaboration with his Halloween 2018 co-composers, his son Cody Carpenter and godson Daniel Davies, who seem to have reignited Carpenter’s passion for music these last couple years. He is pumping out great stuff,
John Carpenter’s horror masterpiece, which is based on The Thing from Another World (1951), the black and white adaptation that has its own 50s eerieness … both are adaptations from a novella by John W. Campbell Jr.
Most recently they tried with a prequel to The Thing 2011 and that version flopped (I haven’t seen it yet). I’m not a fan of prequels in general. We know what’s happening, so it takes a lot of wind from the sails of the story. Alas, this is what they do in Hollywood, they would rather try to cash in on known properties versus taking chances on adapting or telling new stories.
Then I learned there was literally more to the original story. A recently unearthed novel-length version of the classic novella Who Goes There? by John Campea, Jr. called Frozen Hell. Hmm.
Back in 2018, John Betancourt announced the discovery of a novel-length version of the classic novella, and he took to Kickstarter to fund the release of the novel, titled Frozen Hell.
Betancourt is working on a sequel. I was intrigued by who found the original draft by Campbell? Wikipedia had the answer:
In 2018, it was found that Who Goes There? was actually a shortened version of a larger novel previously written by Campbell. The expanded manuscript (including an entirely different opening), titled Frozen Hell, was found in a box of manuscripts sent by Campbell to Harvard University. The discovery was made by author and biographer Alec Nevala-Lee, during his research on a biography of Campbell and other authors
The question is if Campbell himself who became an editor never saw fit to release the expanded version, is it worthwhile? Just because a longer version exists, doesn’t mean the story ever needed to be longer. Maybe the editing to the classic novella was best as is.
This is what new movies based on older properties seem to chase. Usually unwisely, because the vast majority of remakes despite some making money, are pale imitations to earlier, better movies.
This all leaves me with more questions than answers, but there is some curiosity.
Will the new screenplay follow Frozen Hell? The early reports are that this is the plan. It could deviate further, which is my suspicion, thus using Campbell’s original manuscript as a marketing tactic instead of a legitimate need to revisit and use the story.