Okay. So, I know what you’re thinking, ‘Universal Solider: Day of Reckoning? Why the hell should I care about the sixth entry in a series I haven’t thought about in twenty years, if ever?’ The answer is simple; the movie is damn good and incredibly ambitious. John Hyams’ second foray into the franchise after Universal Solider: Regeneration – possibly the best direct-to-video film of all time – is a mind-bending and incredibly violent epic that owes more to Apocalypse Now and Mulholland Drive than it does to the works of Roland Emmerich and Dean Devlin. It is a film that demands to be seen by any serious fan of edgy action, especially those who haven’t seen any of the others.
Recently, I got on the phone with Hyams to talk about the Jean-Claude Van Damme, Dolph Lundgren and Scott Adkins vehicle, which can be seen on On-Demand, iTunes and in select 3D theaters. During our extensive interview we discussed the visceral violence, early script drafts of Regeneration, his literary and film theory influences, the NC-17 cut of the film, the use of limited perspective, crazy IMDb message board theories, a potential Manchurian Candidate themed sequel, getting dropped by an agency, how A Sound of Thunder turned him into a neo-luddite and much, much, much more. Hit the jump for the full interview and the top 11 things to know about Hyams and his film.
You’ve already seen them in action in this summer’s The Expendables 2, but now stars Scott Adkins, Dolph Lundgren and Jean-Claude Van Damme are branching out for Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning. The first trailer for the John Hyams film puts Adkins in the hero role out for vengeance when he discovers his wife and daughter were slain at the hands of Luc Deveraux (Van Damme). “The Muscles from Brussels” isn’t alone in his villainous role this time as he’s brought Lundgren along for the ride. Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning is available On Demand starting October 25th with a theatrical release on November 30th from Magnet Releasing. Hit the jump to see the official synopsis and first trailer for Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning, along with movie images and poster.
In a joint venture that will encourage all sorts of action and darkness, Joel Silver’s Dark Castle Home Entertainment has teamed with Courtney Solomon’s After Dark Films for the action-movie franchise, After Dark Action. The team-up will include five feature films with an international cast that includes Jean Claude Van Damme, Dolph Lundgren, Christian Slater, Jim Caviezel, Peter Weller and Cung Le. The lineup will hit video-on-demand starting on May 11th, but there will also be a theatrical showcase for each of the pictures via a film festival in nationwide markets. Hit the jump to see what films will be part of After Dark Action.
In July of 1992, Universal released the Roland Emmerich movie Universal Soldiers. Starring Jean-Claude Van Damme and Dolph Lundgren as soldiers who kill each other in Vietnam but are reanimated in a secret Army project, the film had mild success at the box office but it still spawned a number of sequels.
And like the soldiers brought back to life in the films, Foresight Unlimited can’t let the franchise die, as they’ve announced Universal Soldier IV with Jean-Claude Van Damme and Dolph Lundgren returning to star and this time they’re going to kill people in 3D. No word on what the film is about…but I’ll take a wild guess it involves guns and violence. John Hyams will be directing the project that starts shooting in October. via THR