Over the next few years we will see a refresh of the legend of Pinhead thanks to a HBO Max project involving Clive Barker.

The news has been out for a while now and it’s sent a shiver down the spine of horror lovers worldwide: Clive Barker, the sublime novelist from Liverpool not to mention director of the first film in the Hellraiser (1987) franchise, will be returning to his most fortunate offspring (the awful Cenobites) as executive producer of the TV series based on the Lovecraftian splatter antics of Pinhead and pals.

Aleksandr Romashev, Sweet Bones Tattoo, Perm, Russia
Aleksandr Romashev, Sweet Bones Tattoo, Perm, Russia

The involvement of Barker – who invented the infernal and perverse world of the Cenobites in his 1986 novella The Hellbound Heart – comes after nine sequels to the 1987 movie at the request of the streaming platform HBO Max. The Hellraiser series will be directed this time by David Gordon Green, the man behind the last Halloween (2018) and the subsequent sequels Halloween Kills and Halloween Ends which have yet to come out in the cinema.

Tye Harris, Faces In The Dark, Austin, USA
Tye Harris, Faces In The Dark, Austin, USA

Since the project is still at the early stages, there is as yet no release date though the most optimistic forecast is for the end of 2021,or at worst early 2022. at the moment there have been no leaks as to who will make up the cast of this new version of Hellraiser though fans are hoping that the iconic English actor Doug Bradley will be invited on board in the role of Pinhead.

Renata Ilciukaite, Fat Fugu Collective, Northampton, UK
Renata Ilciukaite, Fat Fugu Collective, Northampton, UK

Clive Barker, when asked to comment on this new artistic venture declared: “I’m delighted that the mythology of Hellraiser is finally getting a new lease on life.“It’s time the stories went back to their roots. I’m eager to bring to a new audience the most powerful and ancient elements of horror: the darkest evil invading our human lives, and how we must find in ourselves the power to resist it.”

Paul Acker, The Seance Tattoo Parlor, Bensalem, USA
Paul Acker, The Seance Tattoo Parlor, Bensalem, USA

The long-awaited HBO Max series will be scripted by Mark Verheiden (who wrote the screeplay for Battlestar Galactica) and Michael Dougherty (Trick ‘r Treat), with Verheiden as showrunner for the entire project.

Moira Ramone, 25 To Life, Rotterdam, Holland
Moira Ramone, 25 To Life, Rotterdam, Holland

The original 1987 Hellraiser dealt with a mysterious puzzle-shaped box which could open a portal to a demonic dimension. Following the death of a man (the morbid Frank Cotton) who was able to open this box, his ex, Julia, starts to make sacrifices which slowly begin to bring Frank back to life. This is how she attracts the attention of the terrible Cenobites led by the notorious Pinhead.

Kelly Doty, The Gold Dust Gallery, Salem, USA
Kelly Doty, The Gold Dust Gallery, Salem, USA

This is not the only series of Barker’s in the development phase seeing as how the director is supposed to be working together with Dougherty on an adaptation for television of his 1988 cult novel Cabal which two years later was made into the movie Nightbreed.

K.B. Tattoo, Bunny G Studios, Orlandon, USA
K.B. Tattoo, Bunny G Studios, Orlandon, USA

If the people at HBO Max are to be believed– this new series will by no means be a reboot or remake of the original film, but rather a continuation of its mythology. Barker’s original intention seems to be to take a fresh approach, combined with an optimistic and timely message of “combatting evil”.

Cecile Porter, Cecil Porter Studios, Portland, USA
Cecile Porter, Cecil Porter Studios, Portland, USA