Some might know Michael Stephenson as the child star of film disaster Troll 2, possibly one of the worst movies ever made. So bad, in fact, that it has a cult following and has spawned a documentary by Stephenson called Best Worst Movie. Now Stephenson is helming his own dark comedy called Destroy, with producer Jennifer Roth of Black Swan in line to co-produce.
Destroy has vampires, or at least a vampire-killer, so it should easily find an audience among today’s rabid vampire fans. The main character Steve Howard, an ambitious vampire hunter, hails from New Jersey and goes on a quest to rid the world of the evil undead. The only problem is, there aren’t any vampires. As he stakes his way across Bavaria he leaves only the corpses of little old men behind.
In a recent interview with Scott Weinberg of Moviefone, Stephenson said that part of the reason he has the opportunity to make Destroy is because of how bad Troll 2 was. “Strangely, after twenty years, it’s that same train-wreck, or Troll 2, that led me to making the documentary, Best Worst Movie, which has led me to the opportunity of making my first narrative film. Although, stylistically-speaking, Destroy couldn’t be any further from Best Worst Movie. I’d like to think that being a documentary filmmaker has given me experience in delivering what many narrative films lack today: emotional honesty.”
The film is co-written and will be directed by Stephenson, who is acting as co-producer with Lindsay Stephenson of their Magic Stone Productions, and Roth. Stephenson co-wrote the script with Austin’s own Zack Carlson (author of “Destroy All Movies!”). Carlson is in charge, among other things, of programming at the Alamo Drafthouse Theater in Austin, and he met Stephenson at a screening of the Best Worst Movie. In the same interview with Moviefone, Carlson said, “It’s a character-driven comedy that takes place in a quasi-horror film, so maybe the closest comparison would be to say if the Coen Brothers or Alexander Payne directed An American Werewolf in London. That’s close to what we’re aiming for.”
The film, according to Hollywood Reporter, is still in the early stages of casting and is set to shoot in eastern Europe.