The black comedy Burke & Hare (currently available on VOD through SundanceNow and out in theaters on September 9th), from director John Landis, is about two 19th century grave robbers who find a lucrative business providing cadavers for an Edinburgh medical school. Selling dead bodies to medical schools became big business in the 1800s, and William Burke (Simon Pegg) and William Hare (Andy Serkis) saw an opportunity to make their fortunes. The only problem was that there weren’t any dead bodies to be found, so to meet the demand, the two men began to arrange a series of deadly “accidents,” securing a steady stream of bodies and the cash for them, but also drawing more attention than the pair would ever want.
During a recent exclusive phone interview with Collider, Landis (Animal House, Trading Places) talked about the serendipity that led to him directing Burke & Hare, making serial killers likeable leads for a romantic comedy, and making Simon Pegg and Andy Serkis an evil Laurel & Hardy, his direct approach with actors. He also talked about his thoughts on remakes, the possibility of someone doing their own take on An American Werewolf in London, doing a film adaptation of the farcical play The Rivals for his next project, and what led him to direct some episodes of the TV series Psych. Check out what he had to say after the jump: