watch the paranormal trailer for the spinoff of horror comedy 'what we do in the shadows'
New Zealand’s Taika Waititi and Jemaine Clement are at it again.
Image via Youtube
What We Do In The Shadows is a 2014 filmic masterpiece. Not that you'd necessarily pick it on paper: it’s a mockumentary about 379 - 8000-year-old vampires with thick, bad Transylvanian accents, flatting together and trying to figure out how to do (or take) life in the 2000s. It’s set in New Zealand, but not the staggering landscapes underpinning Lord of the Rings: it takes place the capital city, Wellington, and even then, not amongst the crescent moon harbour or the rolling hills that fringe it. Most of the action takes place in an old, dusty house, at night, of course, because vampires are allergic to sun. The most exciting place they go is to a (sadly since closed) bar called The Big Kumara, which I can tell you from personal experience was not really that exciting, unless you’re 16 and sneaking in on a fake ID, drunkenly flailing around the rogue stripper pole on the dancefloor while Taio Cruz’s Dynamite blasts from the shitty sound system.
No, on paper What We Do In The Shadows does not sound like a masterpiece. But it is, because it is helmed by two of the funniest people in New Zealand: Taika Waititi and Jemaine Clement. Taika’s the director/actor/comic genius injecting his unique brand of humour into everything from that’s tender coming of age films like Boy and Hunt for the Wilderpeople, to high octane blockbusters like Thor: Ragnarok. Jemaine is one half of comedy-duo Flight of the Concords, who got famous for singing songs about Hiphopopotamuses and Rhymenoceroses.
While What We Do In The Shadows was made on a slim budget of $1.6 million USD, it made $6.9 million, received massive critical success and a cult following. So it’s not surprising that the film is getting a spin off TV series. And a separate American TV show that reportedly sees the vampires relocate to the States, and a sequel focussed on the vampires’ arch-enemies, the werewolves, called We’re Wolves, which is a perfect name. Basically, Taika and Jemaine are creating their very own Marvel universe and we’re all just living in it.
Unfortunately there are no visuals of the latter two projects yet, and from the sounds of it there won’t be for a while -- Taika told BUILD Series that him and Jemaine are notoriously bad at writing together: “We’ll email each other one line of dialogue once a month.” Not surprising then that WWDITS took six years to write.
That’s part of the reason why it’s so great to have a trailer for the new spinoff, Wellington Paranormal. The mockumentary centres on the two fumbling cops from WWDITS, documenting (/mockumenting?) them investigating a series of unusual paranormal activities, and getting stuck on fences. While Taika and Jemaine don’t star, it’s still heavy on their hallmark dry humour.
The other reason the trailer’s such a happy relief is because the show almost didn’t get made. In 2015, Taika told AV Club that they’d pitched it, but weren’t confident it’d go ahead due to low funding in New Zealand’s TV industry. So it’s great to see the funding commission recognise this very, very worthy show and splash out accordingly.
Here's hoping Netflix notice it too -- Wellington Paranormal's out on July 11 but only in New Zealand, which is not ideal for anyone with good taste who lives outside the islands. Somebody please make it available for me to inhale in one sitting stat, or I might just have to move back.