Though "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre" is being remade by the man responsible for "Pearl Harbor" and a guy who directed videos for C+C Music Factory, Jessica Biel says fans of the seminal horror classic shouldn't be worried.
"I have faith that this 'Texas Chainsaw Massacre' is going to be a lot scarier and a little more disturbing than the original," the "7th Heaven" star said recently. Biel heads up an ensemble cast of lesser known actors, including Eric Balfour ("Six Feet Under"), in the new version of the cult classic flick.
"We worked really, really hard to make it incredibly realistic," she said. "So hopefully the audience will think it could happen to them or that it could be your neighbor who could, you know, be a psychotic maniac."
Biel said she's a huge fan of the 1974 original, about a group of teens stranded in a rural town terrorized by the chainsaw-wielding Leatherface and his family of eccentric cannibals. It was based in part on real-life serial killer Ed Gein. The low-budget flick shocked audiences with it's almost documentarylike feel, but its three sequels, including 1994's "The Return of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre" featuring Renée Zellweger ("Chicago") and Matthew McConaughey ("How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days"), were much glossier.
Many horror fans are horrified at the thought of first-time feature director Marcus Nispel — whose music video résumé also includes Color Me Badd, the Spice Girls and Cher — teaming up with "Armageddon" director Michael Bay (who's producing) to redo one of their genre staples. But Biel promises that their fears are unfounded.
"I don't even know if there is less gore," she said. "I would say we have a good amount of it. ... But it's not going to be blatant. It's kind of a unique way of grossing people out. And it's going to be beautiful at the same time as it's horrifying. I think that's the really big difference.
"Obviously we had more money," she added. "And 30 years later, we have all the technology and special effects. It's going to be more polished than it was. But what made the original so great is that it was kind of like a documentary, like someone just took their video camera and went around. And we had the same [director of photography] that did the original do ours, so I have faith in him. I think it's going to be good."
Biel is similarly optimistic about the score for the new "Chainsaw," which is being penned by Marilyn Manson (see "Marilyn Manson Scoring 'Texas Chainsaw Massacre' Remake"). Principal photography wrapped in the fall for a projected October release.