Anyone who loves horror movies knows that the Spanish-speaking world is a treasure trove and one, like Korean horror before it, mostly untapped by Hollywood. Sure, there’re breakout directors like Guillermo del Toro and Nacho Vigalondo, but Latin horror fans rarely see films steeped in their culture. That’s one of the reasons that Hybrid Entertainment's Cucuy: The Boogeyman is exciting.
The film is focused on El Cuco/El Cucuy, a shapeless (or perhaps shapeshifting) monster that abducts misbehaving children who refuse to sleep, arriving in Glimmer Peak to wreak havoc on the town’s youths. Written and directed by bugbear specialist Peter Sullivan (The Sandman, The Crooked Man), the 31 Days of Halloween film brings an old legend to haunt stars Marisol Nichols (Veronica’s mom on Riverdale), Brian Krause, and Jearnest Corchado. And we at SYFY WIRE have an exclusive teaser trailer.
Check it out:
Taking it all the way to El Cucuy’s cavernous lair, the film looks to have its hooded, hairy mandibles all over our nightmares as another boogeyman to fear. That makes sense, because the idea for the story came as a natural progression from the rest of his child-targeting monster movies, Sullivan tells SYFY WIRE: “We’ve been doing boogeyman films for a couple years. We did Sandman, The Crooked Man, and I was looking for a unique boogeyman idea that hadn’t been exploited when I came across the Cucuy,” the director said.
He prefers the supernatural entities over, say, a guy with a knife in your house because of the ways that it affects the other characters. “We have a supernatural entity out there abducting children, what’re the police gonna do? What’s the family going to do?” asked Sullivan. And the Cucuy was the perfect monster. “I started reading articles and listening to podcasts and looking at artwork,” Sullivan said. “I was so surprised how little of it came into pop culture.”
“There’s a huge audience out there that hasn’t been tapped into,” said the director, mentioning that he also found research material on the Chupacabra. “The Latin American audience is huge into horror films, and there really hasn’t been a movie like this before. It’s an introduction to a mythology that’s going to be new to a lot of people, that’s captivated part of the world. Bringing that to life in a film that’s not just a horror film but a family drama as well... I want audiences to go in expecting more than a few jump scares.” While this is perhaps one of the first forays into the TV movie for the legendary beast, fans seeking more Spanish horror will be happy to discover a rich and vast canon — one that simply hasn’t yet made the jump to Hollywood.
Cucuy: The Boogeyman premieres on SYFY on Oct. 13 at 7 p.m. ET.