A celebration of horror film sequels? Fangoria Magazine’s Lee Gambin thought that was a “friggin’ good idea”, so he and a dozen like-minded friends formed Cinemaniacs to make it happen. Throughout 2013, they’re bringing sequels back to the big screen – and while some are old favourites, Gambin says others are “extremely underrated”.
June’s title is Jaws 2 from 1978. “Everyone who loves film loves Jaws,” Gambin says. “But the beauty of Jaws 2 is that it was ahead of its time, tapping into the dead teenager subgenre that was coming. Black Christmas had happened, but Halloween hadn’t yet…” Bringing back the original cast – as well as composer John Williams to riff on his legendary score – Jaws 2 shifts focus to provide more teens in danger and higher body counts. It almost bridges the monster movie and the slasher film. “The shark even becomes disfigured, adding to its monstrosity.”
Screenings of Halloween II (1982) and Damien: Omen II (1978) are arriving later in the year, and Cinemaniacs are already planning others. Not all horror, either: Gambin says they love all kind of movies – it’s just that horror is the connective tissue between their different tastes. While he’s happy to acknowledge sequels are mostly about easy money (“If the first one works, Hollywood will churn out another 15…”) he adds that there’s good reason for horror’s special place in the history of sequels. “Because the monster,” he says, “never dies.”
Jaws 2 screens with special video introductions from its screenwriter Carl Gottlieb and actors Keith Gordon, David Elliott, and Donna Wilkes.