Rob Zombie Remakes Song ‘The Lords of Salem’ for the Big Screen

Published 3 years ago by , Updated July 12th, 2013 at 11:02 am,

the lords of salem animated still Rob Zombie Remakes Song The Lords of Salem for the Big Screen

Rob Zombie, the founder and lead singer of the heavy metal rock band, White Zombie, has agreed to direct a movie based on his song “The Lords of Salem.” The deal was penned with Haunted Films, a production company run by Paranormal Activity‘s Jason Blum, Steven Schneider and Oren Peli.

The Lords of Salem,” a song from Zombie’s Educated Horses album, already has an impressive animated music video to go along with it. Zombie will write the film’s script this year, while on tour with his band, and plans to start filming next year.

Deadline describes The Lords of Salem story:

“The thriller is set in contemporary Salem, where the inhabitants receive a demonic visit from a 300-year old coven of witches.”

The video for the song (which you can watch below) tells a completely different story, about a group of Protestant men (the “Lords”) who hunt down women accused of practicing witchcraft. The women are then put to death through a number of violent methods.

The story for the The Lords of Salem film adaptation doesn’t appear to share many similarities with the music video, so maybe it follows the lyrics of the song instead?

I speak the truth, I dare not tell a lie.
One child is in fits, the other child dies.
Now the yellow bird a specter lost to linger.
Do you think the suffered, up on Gallows Hill?
Burn me and hang me and I always will,
Tumble like a swine a victim of the fury,
Glory to the saint before you start to bury.

God hates The Lords of Salem, No one can ever save them.
God hates The Lords of Salem, No one can destroy them.

Nope. The inspiration for the movie’s storyline didn’t come from the lyrics either.

Zombie is not a bad director per se, House of 1000 Corpses, for all its faults, showed promise and the sequel, The Devil’s Rejects revealed that Zombie has some talent behind the lens – given the right material. The singer/director’s remakes of the Halloween franchise were a mixed bag, loved by fans and loathed by detractors.

Zombie blames the lack of critical praise on studio meddling – and failing to give him enough control over the films. Zombie won’t be making the same mistake with The Lords of Salem:

“What excited me most was Jason [Blum] saying, you can have total control over the script, casting and final cut.”

Zombie was enticed by the promise of full control – since he believes the DVD Director’s Cut of the Halloween films have enjoyed a warmer reception than the theatrical releases. According to him, the theatrical cuts suffered when the studio chopped too much material (about 15 minutes of Halloween ended up on the cutting room floor).

“It’s so hard to make a patient movie, and if a classic like The Shining was being made now, you know some studio executive would say to cut 70 minutes out of it. People who’ve seen the director’s cut of Halloween on DVD like it better, and these theatrical releases are being cut to little more than the length of a TV show.”

I respectfully disagree. It’s unlikely that anyone who didn’t enjoy a film in theaters will watch a director’s cut – just to see if its better. Usually, fans of a theatrical cut will like the director’s cut better, since it gives them even more of a film they enjoyed the first time. Technically, he is probably right that people like the director’s cut better but those people were, very likely, already fans – not new converts.

At one point last year, Zombie said he disliked remakes and sequels because he only wanted to work on original material, a point he reiterated by dropping out of The Blob:

“I wanted to break away from anything related to preexisting material. The remake train is getting pretty tired now and when I made Halloween, everybody complained, either that it was too much like the original or too different.  But when you do an original premise, they take it on face value and after three years of not being able to win on Halloween, I just couldn’t go through that again.”

I can empathize with Zombie’s frustration, working with “the man” and dealing with all the negative criticism, but when he makes a statement like “I want to break away from ANYTHING related to PREEXISTING material” and then a short bit later announces he’ll be making a movie based off one of his PREEXISTING songs – well, it’s hard not to smell some hypocrisy in the air.

If Zombie wants to make movies from original material, then by all means he should go for it. As he showcased in The Devil’s Rejects, he does have talent as a filmmaker. Or, if he wants to make movies that are remakes or adaptations of other materials, then he should do that instead.

Personally, I just wish he’d stop acting like an upper-tier director, claiming he is above doing remakes, and make the best film he can produce (whatever the story). Maybe he’d even silence some of his detractors.

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Source: Deadline

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43 Comments

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  1. Cool. I was wondering what Zombie’s next stinker…er…film would be. I’m just glad his remake for ‘The Blob’ is dead. I don’t mind remakes, but his idea for the film was completely ridiculous.

  2. I’ll watch anything Zombie does. People can say what they will about his movies but i liked em. I’m not a fan of his music but I don’t think I would call him a hipocrit on his statements. I think he meant pre existing material that not his. I don’t think his song merits that word since he wrote it.

    • I’m the opposite. I love his music, and would probably say he’s my second favorite artist. However, I’ve loathed every single film he’s made.

    • The only reason I call him a hypocrit is b/c he says he hates remakes, but then goes and remake ‘Halloween’.

      • I think that was his experiance on the film that made him say that but, unless i hear his full statement, i couldn’t comment or speculate. I really like TDR though, corpes was decent and the first half of halloween was better than the second.

      • Read the article again. It says just last year that Zombie made the remark about pre-existing material not being accepted because it polarizes audiences. Paul Young is stating in his article that Zombie’s a hypocrite for making one of his own songs a movie. Which incidentally I don’t agree with unless the song, ‘The Lords of Salem’ was originally written by someone else.

        • Glad you caught that detail… was wondering how to touch upon that myself… good point indeed

    • I agree I am a fan through and through and will watch and buy all of his movies don’t care what anyone says I have enjoyed each and every one of his films and have been very impressed by his directing skills I can’t wait to see this new movie hes making

    • I love anything Rob does I love pretty much every single song he has made and I love all of his movies!

      • Whatdya say yer was??? Tyler Bourben??? Thought so… I see your point now.

  3. re-make:
    -verb
    1. to make again or anew.
    2. movies, to film again, as a picture or screenplay.

    -noun:
    3. Movies. a more recent version of an older film.

    Hollween falls under this term, House of 1,000 Courpses and Devil’s Rejects, are his origanal works so they wouldn’t. In a way yes and no on Lords of Salem, It is an oreiganal work of his that he wants to turn into a possable film. So he can do it if he wants but if he’s not doing it shot for shot then I think it’d be an oreiganal work based off of sometihng he’s already done… Wow my head hurts.

    • I was talking about the lords of salem. Yes halloween definitly is a remake so that he an be called a hipocrit for. But i don’t thing the song or video counts cause it’s not a film and the only thing that’s the same is the name. To me that’s like saying the wall the movie is a remake of the wall the album.

      • Yep good point. Oh, side note Sully. did you hear that Extream Makeover Home has been here in Salem lately? Two buddies of mine Toby Wayne and Dave Sherman, do FX work and sculpt busts anyway point is they where at the Oregon School For the Deaf, helping out with zombie makeup and guess who was there….. ROB ZOMBIE!! Checkit out at http://www.tobywaynestudios.com under the Media section. Had I known he was in twon I woulda gone and maybe had him sign my copy of House of 1,000 Courpses and Devil’s Rejects.

        • That’s sweet! I booked marked the site! Cool sculptures, didn’t even know that was around lol. I had the day off and I would of done that too had i known! :)

  4. Live action El Superbeasto!!!!

  5. Rob zombie is bad ass i LOVED his halloween remake. Hes a great director. I want halloween 3 anyone got news on that?!?

    • I think the film is on hold (not sure), but Zombie has already said he won’t come back.

  6. Matt
    Thanks!!! I cant wait for it. I loved his remake,hated the sequel but it was still good.

    • Zombie wont do a third Halloween. theres no reason to. the directors cut of Halloween was a lot better than the theateical cut, the only thing interesting about his reimaging was the back story of a young Myers.

  7. Anthony
    i 100% disagree the theatricul cut was much better i hate how he escapes prison in the unrated directors cut that poor girl gets raped. I like how he escapes in the theatrical cut its bad ass how he breaks those chains!

    • disagree all you want lol. its ther better version. the studios forced cuts on him to achieve an R rating, sorry you couldnt handle it

  8. “…when he makes a statement like “I want to break away from ANYTHING related to PREEXISTING material” and then a short bit later announces he’ll be making a movie based off one of his PREEXISTING songs — well, it’s hard not to smell some hypocrisy in the air.”

    Yeah, i can see how making a movie based off a preexisting song is kinda’ hypocritical and… wait, what? Oh yeah, that’s right! You *did* just say that it wasn’t based on either the lyrics *or* the music video:

    “The story for the The Lords of Salem film adaptation doesn’t appear to share many similarities with the music video…”

    “The inspiration for the movie’s storyline didn’t come from the lyrics either.”

    So, what was your point again? That “The Lords Of Salem” *is* or *isn’t* going to be an original premise? Because i don’t even think you know what you’re trying to say. I mean, other than trying to interpret Zombie’s disillusion with remakes as pretentiousness or something.

  9. Anthony

    Sadly i have the unrated version :( I got that one cuz it had more running time. But it sucks,i like the other one,the unrated drags a bit.

  10. I think it is hilarious that Rob excuses his failure with him not being able to do what he liked. I wonder what he’d want to do with the Halloween movie, shoot half of the movie with inverted colors?
    I’d like to hear his excuses, should this Lords business happen to turn out terrible. Something which wouldn’t surprise me, since the one Rob Zombie movie I’ve seen (House of a 1000 Corpses), has turned me off ever watching a movie from him again, since I’ve never seen such an amateurish movie, made with pro equipment.

    • Absolutely scathing… much appreciated and understood.

  11. i have enjoyed all of rob zombies movies.as far as i am concerned he has no need to make excuses about any of them.

    • (Thumbs up)

  12. Well lets just sum up whats going on here… We have a biting article that cuts both ways while providing just enough rope for Zombie to hang himself if he should so choose to do anything other than step up to the plate with a success on this one.

    We have fans who understand the quintessential dilemma of Zombie as an acclaimed director crossing over from a failed career in another industry working his way up in the horror and sci-fi ranks of qualified directors who gain a cult following with each new avenue of production which they master.

    And, of course, you have film critics who find the entire discussion to be littered with contradiction and idiosyncratic values which blur artistic sensibilities. I havent seen this much direct polarization and dissension since William Shatner made his comeback as a comedian with bankability in the horse industry. Are you laughing yet? Seriously….

    I would love to actually hear folks talk about Zombie’s production sensibilities as a level of product and effect. His previous career came on late in the grunge stylings of pop crossover as a wellworn path that the Misfits and Ramones and even Alice in Chains had all sewn up.

    The genre ethic runs deep here and I can appreciate such levels of loyalty as well as the many values associated with the graphic novel
    empire which we witnessed emerging in the 20th century …. but…. Zombie is purely one foot in either grave here as the case may be played out because even in the wayback concert days I was not willing to pay to see more then one of his shows unless it was himself as a supporting act with some lead such as Marylin Manson. Sad to say but I feel the same about retreads of Halloween which I never paid to see in my life given the far superior film work going on with much more complicated and convoluted cultural relevance … they simply passed me by as I chose to do on the remote control once they hit the boobtube.

    Not to be a pessimist nor to wish ill of Zombie and his continuing journey from East to West, but this film is going to test his metal and all those living dead girls will be watching for signs of a shallow commitment to a hugely capable storyline. Better have some of that Rainbow Serpent dust ready to sprinkle if things dont go as planned…

    Hmmm, now what would I layer the cake if I was not drinking the blood of corporations from 9-5??? Well the recipe had better include all the elements of ergotism, hidden harlotry, white slavery and cultish interpretations of the Spanish Inquisition if its going to possibly engage anything more than loyal fans. Can ya bring it Rob? All of us would hope to see you try. I am more of the mind to set the table for Too little too late… we shall see if Zombie brings me something that I can really sink my teeth into.

    As a sci-fi and gore fan since the days of Dark Shadows and Ultra Man being broadcast to me in the cradle, I was raised as a first generation counter culture maven demanding high standards based upon classics with the humor of Dr. Strangelove, the terror of Vincent Price, the purely objective nihilism of Space Odyssey, the broad spectrum contagion of Andromedia Syndrome, seeing directors striving to be all things Bela Legusi when their own ideas ran out.

    The real question is this: Should I concede the throne of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre to Rob Zombie’s Halloween while living in the hometown of the Return of the Living Dead for the sake of believing a remake of the prudish Salem Tales when I can still watch Tim Burton’s Sleepy Hollow with Christopher Walken sporting Hessian Teeth relatively for free any time I want? Better bring everything you got to this one Zombie because we all learned a few things from Zombieland and we like our home theatres so much that we started making our own movies….

    • Dude… I may disagree on a few points.. But preach man… PREACH. Marilyn Manson reference is WELL APPRECIATED (you can BELIEVE that). You see the BIG picture, something many fail to attempt.

      Now, Sleepy Hollow was taken from me by a friend. Needless to say, I didn’t ask for it back. I am not saying it was a bad film… But As much as I love Walken, no thank you. But heres the thing. Your life has taken you through a different style of taste. Being brought up on what you were brought up one (going off of your post) you saw the originators when they were in the same boat as Zombie- just starting.

      Why, oh why, I ask you is it necessary to make it so culturally stunning and historical? Never once have I walked into a film excited to see how culturally accurate or how many historical period drops can be made in a film. The most recent Indiana Jones delta with a race of Aliens. So why should a horror film about Witches need to be something that one can find within text books. I believe there will be plenty of accuracies, because Zombie knows his facts. He doesn’t become involved in a theory or a classic theme or any concept without first understanding it. I believe that Witches, their actions and the various historical facts about them is far from an unknown subject.

      Keep up the perceptive views and opinions (thumb up and epic high five)

  13. Maybe i was just a little harsh… maybe White Zombie should not be viewed as a failed career but rather an intentional publicity vehicle …. I have to think that White Zombie rode a wave already in motion successfully but then knew when the inspiration card was punched and decided to tour the rest of the amusement park really

  14. Thats TOO much to read my brain cant handle ot LOL JK

  15. sorry… i dont think in sound bytes as a rule… i just think about all the parts to the pieces which come to me

  16. Okay. Lets look at this real quick. Zombie has brought a different feel to his films, not catering to the same washed out bull that has been released in recent years. My Bloody Valentine? Final Destination? 1st person films? Come on now.

    AND TO THE WRITER: Okay, yes…. Lords of salem is “pre-existing” however, i do believe that when you choose to expand on one thing that you have already created (that is of his own inspiration, creation and nature-ie: his art) then it is not technically “pre-existing”. I feel like this rant does a good job or ripping statements from their context.

    And in all reality, what have you done that gives you any room or right to talk? I am currently attending school to better myself as a director and Zombie is recognized for bringing back a classic feel to his films and being the best thing to happen to horror since the “Scream” franchise (not to belittle the now closing SAW film franchise).

    Re-make and re-imagining are two separate things. When it’s looked at, religion has many different takes on the same basic ideals and theories. The greater population doesn’t throw stones at the Luthern church because they saw the same vision in a different light than Catholics. They are TWO SEPARATE religions, as with Zombie’s Re-imagining. Remake is to often slapped onto that film. RZ’s Halloween was not Rob Zombie Making John Carpenter’s Halloween. It was Rob Zombie’s vision and take on the classic film.

    The Lord’s of Salem will be an accomplishment. I am assured of it. Is there a chance I will eat my words? Yes. I’ve done so before. Does Zombie have room for improvement? Yes. But he is respected amongst his peers and has done more (and in a successful manner) than many of the artists of his generation.

    I will stand behind Zombie until he gives me a reason to do otherwise.

    All respect to ya’ll. Peace.

  17. I dunno man… I just think that with the volume out there to draw from its clear that delivering the vision is the point here and accuracy as opposed to visionary is a big leap… I myself like visionary as in the way that looking at zombies was taken on in that movie Zombieland or Sean of the Dead…. its a small thing with Zombies really but if we are talking about witches and the pilgrims and elders of Salem then give me something to sink my teeth into… hahahha… seriously… Lets get into it. Maybe he could add something in or mix up the metaphor for ‘witchery’

    What I am looking for in this dialogue presently is how you could possibly not be engrossed by the Hessian and the details of the iron maiden playing into ‘Sleepy Hollow’. The model that I am working from draws the audience from where they are into the depths of the dementia.

    If you have seen the ‘New World’ and can see my particular set of values as magnifying the intensities of perception as to both character and conditions. Maybe Zombie has some elements of this in his work but really the point is to make it an inescapable set of terms which locks the viewer into surrendering to the story instead of just flaking out with a bunch of red herrings, hares out of hats and slippery slopes of dead end scripting? Like I said.. its a wait and see thing… the art is in the mixology with avenues instead of primrose prairies…

  18. People don’t understand Zombie, so they just criticize him to cover up their ignorance to something that’s over their heads. Zombie is no simpleton. He is a horror and heavy metal GENIUS. I can’t wait to see his new film.

  19. “…but when he makes a statement like “I want to break away from ANYTHING related to PREEXISTING material” and then a short bit later announces he’ll be making a movie based off one of his PREEXISTING songs — well, it’s hard not to smell some hypocrisy in the air.”

    I would say that’s a bit unfair. It’s a safe assumption that he meant pre-existing material from others and that he would like to focus on his own original ideas he has floating around.

    That’s a basic human common sense bit right there. We don’t say things exact to the “T” like we’re being scrupulously monitored by the legal and English diction department.

    Besides, I don’t really think it has anything to do with the song other than the similarities of what Zombie is thinking about in his head and his interests.

    I’m excited for this film, I have high expectation that it’ll be his best.

  20. woot another zombie movie!
    this should be fun

  21. I agree that Zombie is a hypocrite. First offwhen he completed the first Halloween he said he wa done with that. One was all he was going to do. A year later we had the abomination H2. But let’s als get at he point at hand. Where he said that 1000 corpses he realized that you can’t look at writing music and writing a movie the same. Then what does he do. Make a movie based on a song he wrote. He should just simply say I’m doing what I want, and hopefully people will enjoy. Besides constantly making statements about film like he knows what he’s talking about, and putting his foot in his mouth. Beyond that, his movies are okay. I bought house o’ and halloween. Because I thought those movies were well made. I seen a BR for H2 for $5 and thought that was still rediculously overpriced, so I doubt I’ll ever own that. And the Devils Rejects I just thought was boring. Had some interestig moments, but not enough to keep me entertained. I’m a slasher fan, and DR seemed more like a thriller movie than horror. Kind of interested to see what he can do with witches. There’s a fine line to tread. Especially if he wants to do a serious horror movie. What I’m expecting from what I know about previous films of his, is that it will be visually amazing. But everything else will lack. Story, dialogue. Especially if he’s going H2 route. But there is a serious lack of any good witch films, and maybe this will kickstart an era, as I truely thought Sleepy Hallow was going to do for the Witch franchise.

  22. Well it’s HIS preexisting song, therefore it can be called original, because it was something he made anyways, its not like anyone’s going to criticize him for messing with his OWN material as opposed to someone elses. But also considering how the plot of the movie has nothing to do with the song really, it will be unique.

    House of 1000 Corpses, and Devil’s Rejects his original movies were based off his original songs also. To call him a hypocrite for making a movie based on his song, I don’t know I just find that stupid.

  23. Ya know, I’m sick of hearing people piss and moan about Zombie’s movies. Everyone who doesn’t like them picks out every little insignificant detail and complains about it. Yeah, he did 2 Halloween remakes, we all knew it was going to happen anyway by some director was would rape it beyond belief, atleast Rob tried put a new, exciting twist on it, instead of making some pathetic mundane, money trap. I definitly liked Rob’s Michael Myers, way scarier, and I liked how you got to know him in Zombie’s, in the original you didn’t know anything about the killer. I LOVED Corpses and the DR, totally badass. I’d like to see any director come up with something so hardcore for a mainstream audience (except maybe Tarantino). Can’t wait for Lords of Salem!

  24. Hi there i just what to know we can try out for rob zombies movie…The lord of salem….I have a little arting but i am out going love horror movie.

  25. You said he’s a hypocrite because he’s making a movie on a prexisting product. First The Lords of Salem is a childhood project he wanted to realize years and years ago as a movie. Second the song is based no prexisting idea because HE CREATED THE SONG and you said it yourself, the movie will have no link with the song except the main idea. Other than that I’d like to say that Rob is for me the new John Carpenter/Stanley Kubrick. What I mean by this is: He make horror movie fresh and appealing as those genius did before him but in the 21th century. Most of the new stuff in the horror genre today is gargabe and for fan of horror movie as me, he’s the forbidden fruit amongs the million of rotten apple out there. This guy deserve more attention than what he got now. House of 1000 Corpses and Halloween are classic for me. I can’t wait to see this crazy ass psychotic movie !

  26. Rob Zombie is a great director. For me he is the best horror director of the current century. He doesn’t make the garbage others do and his movies are classics. Can’t wait for Lords of Salem if it comes out.

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