It might be hard to imagine, but it sounds like The Toxic Avenger was originally going to look even more grotesque in the upcoming reboot.
Following an obscured first glimpse of the "freaky folk hero" of the title and a batch of promo stills spotlighting some of his supporting players, Legendary finally gave us a look at Toxie in action last month in the first red-band teaser for the remake - but we still didn't get a proper reveal of the redesigned take on Winston Gooze's hideous alter-ego.
A leaked shot from the Fantastic Fest screening did the rounds online shortly after, and while the image wasn't the clearest, it certainly looked like the new Toxie was going to stick with the classic Tromo depiction for the most part.
While speaking to Collider, director Macon Blair revealed that the new Toxic Avenger was originally going to look "much more monstrous."
"You know what? He started out way more — what would be a way to say it — more like a zombie, more like rotted off, and much more monstrous. We went through a series, just when we were in the art phase, and we had a couple of really great artists, one was named Vanessa Menendez and one was named Jonas McCluggage, he's a comic book artist, she's a painter. I was really exploring some real Night of the Living Dead-type looks and then we kind of took a second look at that and as it went further along, we tried to humanize him a bit more so that even though he's got all these boils — I'm not sure if people will have seen the movie when they watch this or not, but it's no spoiler that he looks gross — he's got boils and warts and blisters, he's got one super distended eye, but within that you can still see a lot of humanity. And so we pushed the monster side of things really far and then walked that back."
We will probably see some early concept designs once the movie is in theaters, but for now, fans would be happy with just one clear look at Toxie!
Though Dinklage did the voice, Blair has previously revealed that a British actress named Luisa Guerreiro is actually under the mounds of prosthetics.
"She’s Portuguese. A complete badass. 110 degrees, 30 pounds of foam makeup. Motors all over her face to move the eyebrows and stuff like that. What she did was, and this is why I get so excited talking about it, Peter performed the whole movie on videotape as Toxie. Just himself. But making the choices, delivering the lines, physical choices, how fast he’s running all of it. There’s a video version of him just in a white room playing the whole movie. Luisa takes those tapes home, memorizes them, and studies them. She plays Teletubbies and Oompa Loompas. She’s like a physical performer. So, she’s studying his gait and his timing, his pauses, his line delivery, all of that. She replicates that on set, and then Peter, six months later, comes back and reinterprets the voice based on what she did."
We've heard that another trailer should be with us fairly soon, so keep an eye on FearHQ.com for updates.
“While the original film (which premiered in 1984 – almost 40 years ago!) followed the fate of Melvin Ferd Junko III (Mitch Cohen), who goes from zero to toxic hero in a case of bullying gone awry, Macon Blair’s contemporary take follows a hideously deformed creature of superhuman size and strength all his own.
Peter Dinklage stars as downtrodden janitor Winston Gooze who, after falling into a vat of toxic waste, becomes none other than The Toxic Avenger. This timely reimagining is up to its eyeballs in environmental themes as Winston goes up against the evil forces of greed and corruption to save his son, his friends, and his community. Even as this story exists on its own terms, the spirit undoubtedly remains connected to the original. Troma fans old and new will be pleased to know that the film has been rated “R” for violence and gore – as per Troma tradition.”
The Toxic Avenger was first introduced in the 1984 movie of the same name from indie studio Troma Entertainment, and has since gone on to achieve cult status with several sequels, a comic book series and even a short-lived 1991 children's animated show called The Toxic Crusaders.
The Toxic Avenger stars Peter Dinklage as Winston Gooze, along with Jacob Tremblay, Taylour Paige, Julia Davis, Jonny Coyne, Elijah Wood, and Kevin Bacon.
No theatrical release date has been announced.