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The Deleted Scene From “Poltergeist” That Almost Gave it An “R” Rating

THE DELETED SCENE FROM "POLTERGEIST" THAT ALMOST GAVE IT AN "R" RATING
Credit: Poltergeist iii Fan Site

Photo Credits: Poltergeistiii.com

In keeping with the theme of celebrating Poltergeist‘s legacy on it’s last year before the film hits 40, I wanted to highlight a scene that although filmed, never made the cut into the final film. Poltergeist is rich in film lore history and the fascination surrounding the supposed curse, is just one piece of the horror puzzle that has captivated fans throughout it’s run in the 80s’ and beyond in the present. And if you’re a superfan like myself, you might know about this somewhat cringy bit that has since been lost to the abyss of the editing process. Let’s talk about that spider ceiling scene.

Tentacles have been an obvious theme in the first two films, albeit more pronounced in the second film, however here in what was to be an extended and more brutal scene involving Diane (JoBeth Williams) after her bath, it basically gives The Entity (released in the same year) a run for its money. The scene without the added context strongly suggests sexual assault, but the deleted scene takes it to full on rape.

Mike Wood, who served as mechanical effects supervisor for the film and Mitch Suskin, visual effects supervisor, remarked on the cut footage and what it was to entail in an old Cinefex article circa 1982:

“At times we got overwhelmed by fun effects and audacious ideas,” Mitch Suskin remarked, “possibly more than the film required. The one scene that sticks in my mind is where Diane is pulled up the wall, across the ceiling, and down the other side. During that, there was going to be a kind of ‘stain’ in her path-something foreshadowing the closet turning into a mouth. It was a pulsating, organic, ugly thing.” The concept was eventually discarded, but not before the physical effects crew had gone ahead and built it and it went before the cameras. “We made a large latex bladder for the stain,” Mike Wood related. “There were holes in the wall so we could actuate it manually from behind, and we had people strapped to the outside of the set, putting their hands through. During the scene, the stain was to have grown bigger and more amorphous, and the girl was supposed to roll through it from her bed.” A more risque notion was to be the violation of Diane Freeling by unseen forces as she involuntarily defied gravity in her upturned room. Wood contrived a special harness to facilitate “rape” movements in that position, but when the idea endangered the picture’s PG rating, it, too, was scrapped. An alternate scene of Jobeth Williams writhing in bed remains in the film, but its darker implications are less apparent.

poltergiestiii.com

Well, that alone would have indeed given the film a hard “R” rating and I can certainly appreciate why they made the decision they did. I for one, think it may have taken away some of the sophistication the movie has engraved in it with it already embodying plenty psychological scare tactics without all the gore, guts, and torture porn. Don’t get me wrong, I love me a good gorey trash flick. But with Poltergeist, it just doesn’t fit in well with the purity and horror innocence of the film; which is what makes it so damn great. Although I admit, I don’t think I’d be able to suppress the curiosity that resides in me if this footage is ever unearthed and released.

The above images credited to the ultimate Poltergeist fan site, poltergiestiii.com, are the first to my knowledge to have been displayed on the internet. It’s also a fantastic go-to for anything on the film(s) you would ever want to know- so I highly suggest rummaging through their web pages for some fun trivia and stills on the movies.

Leprechaun VS Candyman: The Horror Icon Crossover That Almost Happened

Imagine a world where two iconic horror urban legends crossed paths and possibly fought to the death over… well, I have no clue how that would have worked but hey, IT ALMOST HAPPENED.

Horror crossovers have always been more of a fan service with a guaranteed cash cow for studios for audiences of beloved characters. Sometimes they work, and sometimes they flop harder than Gingerdead Man VS Evil Bong. As ridiculous as the title sounds, its hard to fathom a serious and terrifying entity such as Candyman squaring off against the comical-horror that is the Leprechaun. Both Tony Todd and Warwick Davis are well-known thespian actors that take their roles very seriously and as silly as the premise sounds, I have no doubts they would have given it their all had both been on board with the idea. But, alas Tony Todd just couldn’t do that to the iconic character, and quite honestly- as much as much I wouldn’t mind seeing this, I gotta’ say he made the right decision.

Off the heels from the blockbuster Summer hit in 2003 of Freddy VS Jason, studios were eager to cash in another crossover so they started throwing around ideas. One of which, was this of course and it actually got pretty far along in the process as apparently, a rough-draft of a script was written and presented to Tony Todd himself. Of which he shut down almost immediately according to an interview with Dread Central.

Todd explained the immense respect he has for the character he portrays and that it would be a disservice to possibly tarnish the legacy Candyman has brought forth in the genre. And as much as my curiosity would peak into seeing this showdown, he’s right in the fact that it would very much so diminish the complexity and terror of one of the ONLY POC icons we have in the horror catalog.

The only thing the pair of films really have in common, is the studios both films were made under. Given them the opportunity to crossover without any legal issues. But that is as far as it goes.

I feel like writing this, I’m totally shitting all over the Leprechaun series and really, that couldn’t be further than the truth. Hell, Leprechaun 3 in Vegas (my hometown), is one of my favorite guilty pleasures to watch! I have the utmost respect for Davis and all the joys he has brought all us horror fans with what he did to that character. But in all seriousness, Leprechaun and Candyman just ain’t on that same level. Lep, is a comedy-horror. So of course, a crossover of any kind will work in that aspect. The Sweets of the Sweet, not so much. Guess if we ever want to see that happen, you better get on to downloading the Terrordrome horror fighting style game for PC.

Not much else to say about that, BUT since it’s St. Paddy’s Day here’s one of my favorite clips from the aforementioned Leprechaun 3!

Happy corn beef and cabbage day from yours truly, St. Patti Paultergeist!

I only get to say that once a year so let me have this, hah!

Welcome To Prime Time With The VHS Retailer’s Promo For A Nightmare On Elm Street 3: The Dream Warriors

WELCOME TO PRIME TIME WITH THE VHS RETAILER'S PROMO FOR A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET 3: THE DREAM WARRIORS

In case you’re new here to Nightmare Nostalgia, one of my oddball favorite things in this world is finding old VHS retailer promos. If this is your sort of kink as well, there’s plenty on the site here if you look around! However, one in particular I haven’t been able to track down until very recently. And it is of course A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: The Dream Warriors– my personal favorite of the franchise. So you can bet your sweet dreams I was as giddy as Freddy seems to be promoting the shit out of his new film back in 1987.

If you need a refresher, or are just plain asking what the hell a VHS retailer promo is, it’s basically a special media kit made for VHS stores and chains across the country persuading buyers to get said movie into stores. These days, they are obviously hard to come by unless you had family in the industry that owned one of these Mom and Pop shops. However, thank the glorious VHS gods for Youtube. As we can find some real treasures uploaded on there.

Anyways, as Freddy proclaims in the promo, Dream Warriors “isn’t your average Drive-In movie schlop we got here.” As the film ranked in twenty-five million bones in the first two-week run throughout the theater release. Going on to make over 44 million in theater revenue, making it not only, the most profitable horror sequel to date at the time; but the biggest rake in for an independent film! So why the hell is Freddy hawking the film like a sleazy salesmen you ask?

The answer is WHO CARES. He did the same for Dream Master and Dream Child and it’s easy to see he loved every second of hamming himself up as Freddy. And he can do it forever as far as I’m concerned.

From A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warrior (1987) -Your wish is my  command! - #1987 #3 #8… | Dream warriors, A nightmare on elm street,  Nightmare on elm street

In the promo, Freddy and the narrator walk us through the accomplishments the Nightmare franchise to date via critic praising, talk show spots, and of course a dash of Dokken to get the beats dropping! Then we get to the bribery part, (honestly do we really need it?) Where if retailers but a set amount of video tapes for the store, you get some cool swag to help promote the movie inside the store as well. I’m still looking for that glorious poster light box if anyone has it collecting dust in that storage unit- just throwing that out there, hah! And the kicker here, a shout-out to the back-in-the-day-all-the-rage “Be In My Nightmare” sweepstakes which you could only enter through your local participating video store via a mail-in or drop-off slip. I still don’t know who won to this day, but I must have entered at least fifteen times. Not even sure if that was against the rules but as a kid, like I cared.

Credit: American History Card, display. ‘Freddy’s Be in My Nightmare Sweepstakes’. 1987.0421.019.

Well anyway, here you are my Nostalgic Nuggets, with special thanks to this upload via YouTuber Beyond Sour Grounds, the long-lost VHS Retailer Promo for A Nightmare On Elm Street 3: The Dream Warriors in its entirety!

A Nightmare on Elm Street 1-7 Blu Ray Series