Over the weekend, Taika Waititi and Jemaine Clement previewed the American spin-off series of their beloved 2014 vampire mockumentary, What We Do in the Shadows at New York Comic Con.
The FX show will follow a different set of vampire roommates, played by Matt Berry, Kayvan Novak, Natasia Demetriou and Harvey Guillen, as they feed their bloodlust in Staten Island, New York.
At a post-screening panel, executive producer Paul Simms spoke about landing on that choice of location, after first mulling over other options like Denver and LA.
We liked the idea that these vampires had maybe 200 years ago been sent to conquer America, but they’d sort of lost their way…We’re about to shoot an episode where they venture into Manhattan for the first time. They had assumed Staten Island was all of New York, or maybe even all of America, so there’s a whole story where they go and meet the Manhattan vampires, who are a little bit cooler than they are.
Mmm but could the Manhattan vampires be as stylish as this?
Then there’s the question of whether or not characters from the OG movie – heck, why not characters’ from the NZ series, or the werewolf sequel – could wind up in New York. Waititi was quick to respond, “Yeah, we’re creating a universe to rival that of Marvel. We’re taking one idea, and stretching it out for years and years.”
Sure that’s obviously a joke, and they’d have to figure out if vampires can travel on planes (like even just that bit where you have to leave the blinds up for take-off and landing could spell trouble), but please maybe actually do it? That’d be good, yeah. Vampire mockumentaries, especially those written by Clement and directed Waititi, are a truly rich vein of content.
Sadly it looks like Clement and Waititi won’t be cameoing in the series, which at the very least makes the production side of things a little easier. Clement says it was tough to wield authority on set the first time around: “In the movie, when we were wearing these ridiculous outfits, no one on the crew would take us seriously.”
Punters in the room apparently had a good chuckle at an ‘energy vampire’ character, who lulls his victims into submission with incredibly dull conversation. Clement described it like this:
I think we all know a person like that. We hadn’t thought of anything like that for the movie, but when I was reading about different kinds of vampires, that was one that people mentioned as a real type of vampire that exists, and that we all come up against. I can think of conversations I’ve had where I’ve been trapped by someone. Everyone who watches the show says ‘We have someone in our office who is like that.’”
Here’s what people in the room thought of the preview:
Only supposed to share my “impression” of FX’s What We Do In The Shadows pilot so here we go:
— Leah Marilla Thomas (@leahmarilla) October 7, 2018
The pilot for What We do in the Shadows was incredible!! I cannot wait for all of you to see it! Taika came to talk to fans after & signed my drawing and I got to give him some keychains! They gave us little touchscreen gloves because vampires can’t use touchscreens!! pic.twitter.com/Lath5drCkA
— Tania @ Shop Update 5/20 + Noble Plush Shipping !! (@nobledemonsxo) October 7, 2018
Saw the pilot of What We Do in the Shadows and died, it was so good 🧛🏼♀️ pic.twitter.com/3SMS4YoO3Z
— banjo kazooie (@Kazundheit) October 7, 2018
Let’s cap this off with a selection of pics of Waititi having a snooze, presumably when he’s meant to be doing big adult directing things:
The FX series is due to premiere next year.
A movie sequel, We’re Wolves, presumably focusing on Rhys Darby‘s rival group of werewolves from the original film, was revealed to be in the works late last year.