Kevin Bacon has had a long and successful career in Hollywood. Spanning more than 40 years, he’s been in a number of hits including Animal House, Footloose, A Few Good Men, Apollo 13 and Mystic River. Just don’t ask him about Friday the 13th. It’s a sore subject.
But one movie that doesn’t get mentioned enough is the 1990 monster classic, Tremors. Bacon plays Val McKee, a not too bright cowboy who has two goals by the end of the film: kill the giant worm creatures and get the girl.
Tremors has become a cult classic and a couple of years ago, the SYFY channel made a pilot with the intention of creating a television show continuing the franchise. And for the first time since the original, Bacon was starring in it. The funny thing is, though, they never went forward with the series, and it’s a decision that’s confused the actor ever since.
“We made an excellent pilot outside of Albuquerque, recreated the town, had a really great cast, director, and writer and to this day I still don’t understand why they didn’t want to move forward with it,” Bacon recently shared with Dread Central. “It’s a real head-scratcher for me. If I honestly thought the pilot was sh-t then I’d say we just didn’t crack it but it was cool, and that’s a really hard balance to get, between funny and scary, as you know, that’s the sweet spot. Tremors was good at that, as were Shaun of the Dead and Get Out. But yeah, it was for a series, not a TV movie.”
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It’s even more perplexing considering five sequels have been made with a sixth one coming soon. But while those B-movies certainly have their fans, bringing Bacon back for a show would have certainly increased interest. And based on the actor’s comments, they were making great stuff.
Tremors did poorly at the box office, but once it hit the home video market and more specifically, cable, the movie took off. Sure, it’s a bit of a Jaws-on-land knockoff, but it works thanks to the cast and the practical effects.
Ironically, Bacon often wonders where Val has been all of these years, with the actor saying:
“I have a very specific thing that happened, which was I wanted to reboot Tremors. And worked very hard on it and did a fantastic pilot with Blumhouse,” Bacon shared with Variety last December. “Andrew Miller was the writer of it. We shot the pilot. I thought it was cool and SYFY decided not to go forward with it. I liked that character because it was the only character I really looked at and said, ‘I wanna know where he is 25 years later.’ We left him at a certain point, he had this extraordinary thing with these worms, underground worms. He’s not a smart man, kind of a loser, but he was able to fight these worms. Now let’s see what happened to him 25 years down the line.”
There definitely could be a place for Tremors on some streaming service. Cobra Kai is about to head to Netflix and for the amount of money they spend on content, I can’t imagine they would pass up Tremors with the original star. Now if they could just get Michael Gross to come back… oh wait, he’s in ALL of them!