Time and time again, whenever anyone asks me about older horror films they should look for, I suggest The Keep. That’s usually followed by: “Who directed it?” To which I respond – Michael Mann, the director of Thief, Manhunter, The Last of the Mohicans, The Insider and more. The response to that is often one of surprise. Michael Mann did a horror movie?
He did. And it stars Ian McKellen, Gabriel Byrne and Scott Glenn.
And it’s hard to find unless you have Netflix Instant. It’s usually lurking around there. But good luck searching for it on DVD or Blu-ray because Paramount, it’s rights holder, refuses to give it a proper release in a contemporary format. If you have a VCR or laserdisc player, you’re in better shape, I suppose.
Today, thanks to the might power of Twitter and some friends there, I was made aware of A World War II Fairytale: The Making of Michael Mann’s The Keep, an endeavor spearheaded by director Stewart Buck and The Keep historian/French makeup FX artist Stephane Piter.
From what I’ve gathered at the project’s website, this has been in the works for some time and is independently financed – as most horror documentaries are. Buck brought the project to the market at the Fantasia International Film Festival recently to find completion funds and it sounds like the trip was fruitful for the UK filmmaker.
The site’s gallery has a breakdown of who has been interviewed…shocked they landed F. Paul Wilson, the author of the novel The Keep is based upon.
Buck expressed on the site that the recent love and care that’s being put into the Nightbreed: Director’s Cut has inspired him and, ideally, he would love to see the documentary released alongside a proper release of The Keep. That may be pipe dreams, however. Still, know that a documentary is in the works and on the way about this weird, stylish film in Mann’s oeuvre.