It’s been almost 20 years since the original From Dusk Till Dawn blew into theaters, but now original director Robert Rodriguez is bringing the vamp-horror film to the small screen. So, what can we expect?
To help anchor the launch of his new, Hispanic-focused English-language network El Rey, Rodriguez has opted to mine the collective nostalgia for From Dusk Till Dawn to serve as the network’s first flagship series. Considering how bad the film sequels were, hey, it’d be hard for the series to be much worse.
The first footage from the series looks promising, and the show seems to hit that dark, sexy, funny tone that the original film captured so well. Sure, we’re bummed Quentin Tarantino isn’t involved, but at least Rodriguez is there to provide some continuity.
With the series set to launch on March 11, Rodriguez has opened up about the process of expanding the film’s mythos into a full-fledged, 13-episode series. From snake cults to a new twist on the original film’s story, here’s what he told Collider we can expect:
“I was looking forward to the challenge of it. Someone had actually asked about doing From Dusk Till Dawn before I had the network, and I said, ‘No, Quentin and I control the rights to it. We really wouldn’t want to do it for television, unless at least one of us was heavily involved.’ And I didn’t myself getting into television, at that time. But then, I thought of a way to do. The whole season takes place from dusk until dawn, and we retold the original story with the Gecko brothers and Santanico. In the original film, when I first read the script, it didn’t really take Mexico into account, so I added into the original movie, things that I researched about Aztec cultures and mythologies. I found a blood cult that worships snakes and I included that in the film. And the last shot of the hinted at a larger mythology.
So, I always thought that was a cool idea that we didn’t get to explore further in the film because it just wasn’t written that way, but I left it there, just to tickle people’s imagination about what it could be. And now, years and years later, when I have the El Rey Network, I thought that would be a great first show to do that would be a known title to lead people to the network and show them what the network was about, but also give a chance to re-explore some of those ideas that I had researched, way back in the first film, and expand Quentin’s story to include new characters, new trajectories and new storylines for the original characters, and really build that mythology up more with the Santanico cult, so that we could follow that in more seasons, later on.
So, the challenge was really finding a new writing team, and me writing the original script to the first episode to show how it would be expanded, so that they could emulate that style for other episodes. It was just a lot of fun. Quentin writes the best characters, so to take those characters and expand on them and see where else they could have gone or come from, was really, really exciting and fun to work with. That’s what drew a lot of our cast, as well was just getting the chance to play Quentin Tarantino characters in a television series, which has never been done before.”
We’re definitely intrigued, and From Dusk Till Dawn is one of those franchises that could be a great fit for the modern push into freaky-horror television. The series stars Robert Patrick, Don Johnson, Adrianne Palicki, DJ Cotrona, Wilmer Valderrama, Jake Busey, Lane Garrison and Zane Holtz.
Do you think Rodriguez can pull it off?