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Is Eli Roth's 'Thanksgiving' any closer to a release date?

With Thanksgiving just around the corner, it’s a good time to check in on Eli Roth’s planned feature-length film Thanksgiving. The film has been eagerly awaited by fans ever since Eli Roth’s faux movie trailer of the same name made a surprise appearance in the Robert Rodriguez/Quentin Tarantino double feature Grindhouse. Roth’s 2-1/2 minute trailer nearly earned Grindhouse an NC-17 rating due to its over-the-top violence and nudity, but the Thanksgiving trailer left fans bloodthirsty for more.

Unofficial 'Thanksgiving' fan art
Dimension Films

Seven years later there are indications that the feature-length Thanksgiving could be around the corner. Roth said in 2012 that he had written “a very extensive treatment” with co-writer Jeff Rundell, and that they also recruited Jon Watts and Christopher D. Ford, writers of the upcoming Roth-produced horror film Clown. Clown now has an official trailer and is on its ways to being released, so perhaps this will free up more time and resources for Roth to complete Thanksgiving?

Roth could use a jumpstart to his career, which seems to have stagnated somewhat since he first burst onto the horror scene with the unlikely success of Cabin Fever in 2002. Since then, his main accomplishments to horror have been Hostel (2005) and Hostel: Part II (2007), which, to this day remain influential, particularly as examples of the so-called “torture porn” genre.

Since 2007 Roth has kept himself busy producing, acting and even curating a horror exhibit at the EMP Museum in Seattle, but his directorial efforts have all either been delayed or cancelled along the way. His latest effort, The Green Inferno, a tribute to 1970’s-era mondo cannibal films, has just recently been delayed due to problems with its distributor. Hopefully, The Green Inferno will eventually see release by 2015, when we should also see the release of Roth’s psychosexual thriller Knock, Knock starring Keanu Reeves.

Roth remains an influential figure in horror, but it would be nice to see more of his actual directing hit the big screen. Thanksgiving is the perfect choice for many fans, and what better way to shock than with a nasty, mean-spirited holiday slasher in the vein of Silent Night, Deadly Night. Will a feature-length Thanksgiving surprise us time for the holiday? Not likely, but in the meantime enjoy the original 2007 trailer. WARNING! Video contains adult content; for mature viewers only.

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