Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

There Was No Contest Of Egos Between Clive Barker And David Bruckner On The Hellraiser Reboot

Master of horror Clive Barker has handed the reins of his most notable franchise over to director David Bruckner for Hulu's reboot of "Hellraiser." Barker, the famous genre author behind the "Abarat" book series, has only directed three feature films in his career: 1987's "Hellraiser," 1990's "Nightbreed," and 1995's "Lord of Illusions." The crown jewel of his filmography, "Hellraiser," was based on an original Barker novella, "The Hellbound Heart," and was followed by three theatrically released sequels and six direct-to-video follow-ups, with varying levels of involvement from Barker. Now, with Bruckner's reboot, the series has a chance to steer away from the poorly reviewed latter sequels.

Bruckner's name is pretty synonymous with the horror genre as well. He first burst on the scene with his work in the 2007 film "The Signal," in which he and two other filmmakers effectively played a game of cinematic telephone where each director helmed one act of the film's story. Bruckner continued working in the anthology format in both 2012's "V/H/S" and 2015's "Southbound." The following year, he made his feature film debut with the Netflix film "The Ritual." That well-reviewed film led to 2020's "The Night House," another well-received horror film, and this collection of hits within the horror genre led to his big franchise project, Hulu's "Hellraiser."

Clive Barker is a fan of David Bruckner's work and was happy to collaborate

In an interview with Bloody Disgusting, Clive Barker and David Bruckner discussed having no egos going into the well-reviewed "Hellraiser" reboot. Barker stated that he was a fan of Bruckner's work prior to working on this film. Once he was brought onto the project, Bruckner and Barker began having conversations about where Bruckner was creatively taking the film. Bruckner said, "It was a regular rhythm for us. So throughout the prep process when I was putting the movie together, Clive and I would find moments to talk. Sometimes we'd reach out of the blue, sometimes, he would call, or I would call, or one of us would have an idea. And so, there was this just really awesome creative conversation during the prep process."

Barker added, "Yeah, it was also this respect in both directions, so that makes it easier." Bruckner shared his designs for the new Cenobites with Barker throughout the making of the film so Barker would know where the film was headed with the characters and lore he originated. Bruckner said that the author was very encouraging and eager to allow up-and-coming artists to take control of his property: "You were always very encouraging of the fact that [...] this was going to be our movie, and all your creative input was all in the spirit of helping us find this film and being true to where it was heading."

David Brucker is a big fan of the original Hellraiser

In an interview with The AV Club, David Bruckner has so much praise for the 1987 "Hellraiser" saying, "I mean, the original film's a masterpiece." When making the reboot, he said, "I did spend a lot of time thinking about what are my favorite ideas from the 'Hellraiser' universe?"

Having some experience working in horror franchises from working on the now-defunct sequel to "Friday the 13th" (per Bloody Disgusting), Bruckner says he was attracted to working within the "Hellraiser" franchise because "There is so much you can do with it. I love anything that explores possession and temptation, because there's a whole lot of fascinating feelings wrapped up in that. And then it straddles the line between so many different subgenres of horror. It just goes places that no one else can go. And I mean, that's Barker. So just the fan in me was like, I want this to exist." The "Hellraiser" reboot on Hulu seems to come from a real place of reverence from Bruckner, thus allowing that level of respect between the collaborators.

Bruckner's "Hellraiser" is currently streaming on Hulu.