While at New Beverly Cinema on November 19, 2011 to talk about her husband John Carpenter’s movie “Vampires,” producer Sandy King also took the time to discuss its sequel “Vampires: Los Muertos.” Not many know about this one, but that’s largely because it went straight to video and features none of the cast from the original. King went into detail about its making and summed up Screen Gems handling of it by saying, “They f***ed it up!”
The original storyline for “Vampires: Los Muertos” had all the original slayers dead which necessitated that a new team be put together. Tim Guinee was set to return as Father Adam as his character was intended to be the through line for both films. Sheryl Lee was also going to return as Katrina had since become queen of the vampires. King never mentioned if Daniel Baldwin would be back, but I’m assuming that wasn’t to be the case.
The problem with this sequel, King said, was that the studio thought they got the movie, but they really didn’t. This was quickly proved when they introduced some changes during production. Guinee ended up not being brought back (we see his grave at the movie’s start), and they instead cast a Mexican soap opera star named Cristián de la Fuente as a completely different character named Father Rodrigo. King was also perplexed as to why they cast rocker Jon Bon Jovi as the lead vampire hunter Derek Bliss. Granted, Jovi is not a bad actor, but King best described him as looking like a “New Jersey surfer.”
Apparently, the studio ended up calling King and Carpenter at one point to ask, “Can you tell us how to fix this?” To this, King replied bluntly, “No.”
In the end, King made clear that the studio’s interference is what messed everything up. She said that if you don’t understand the myths and legends involved in the original “Vampires” movie, then “you’re going to f*** it up.” Also, if your main villain of a female vampire is not the “hottest lady,” then the story won’t make any sense. All of this in her opinion showed a lack of respect not just for the audience but for the genre as well.
In all fairness, “Vampires: Los Muertos” is an okay movie if you expect nothing more than a decently entertaining B-movie. Even King said director Tommy Lee Wallace, who had directed another sequel to a John Carpenter movie with “Halloween III: Season of The Witch,” did a lot of “neat things” that were fun to watch. I myself loved the kick ass rock and roll score by Brian Tyler who has since gone on to compose music for “Rambo” and several of the “Fast & Furious” movies. But when all is said and done, this sequel was a missed opportunity and another example of why studio executives would do best not to interfere too much, if at all, in the moviemaking process.