Thursday, 27 February 2020

At FANTASY ISLAND be careful of what you wish for, you might just get what you deserve

Written by Hayashiforest.

Palm trees, waterfalls, sandy white beaches and white suits. The ultimate place that grants your greatest fantasies, albeit for a price. Remember the wise old saying, “Be careful of what you wish for?” Somehow, there is an eerie ring to it that lends itself well to the element horror making FANTASY ISLAND ripe for a horror movie adaptation.

Fantasy Island Origins 

The origins of Fantasy Island is as uncanny as its plot. The series hails back from the 1970s and was created by Gene Levitt for the ABC television network. It starred the late Ricardo Montalban as the enigmatic and mysterious Mr. Roarke and Herve Villechaize as his assistant Tattoo.

The original Fantasy Island's Mr. Roarke (left) played by Mexican actor Ricardo Montalban with his assistance Tattoo played by Herve Villechaize.

According to the producer Aaron Spelling, the series was unintentionally "pitched" to the executives as a joke. During a pitching session that was not going well, an exasperated Spelling exclaimed, “What would you like me to do? Put some guy on an island and have him grant wishes to people?!”

Aaron Spelling, the producer of the show.
Although it was sarcasm, the network was sold on the idea. Spookily enough, the series became a hit that spanned for 7 seasons from 1978 to 1984.

What made the series so alluring? 


As the name implies, Fantasy Island has a mysterious element that borders on the surreal and supernatural. The presence and roles of Mr. Roarke and Tattoo were left open to interpretation. For those of us old enough to remember, the series will open with the ringing of the bell and crying of, “De plane! De plane!” by Tattoo atop the bell tower, announcing the arrival of new guests to the island. What the island truly represents and why do fantasies magically happened are never explained in the series.

Tattoo atop the bell tower yelling, "De plane! De plane!"
Each episode featured two guests with their fantasies that will play out during their time on the island. When a fantasy manifests, the guests must see it through to its conclusion. That is where the fantasy often unexpectedly takes on a dark twist. If the guests survive the fantasy, the episode will conclude with a moral lesson. Fantasy Island is best described as a cautionary tale that leans towards dark undertones similar to The Twilight Zone.

Welcome to the new Fantasy Island (2020) by Blumhouse.

Michael Pena as the new Mr. Roarke.
With Blumhouse at the helm of the new 2020 reboot, it will not stray far from the classics. It is still set on an exotic island and will still feature the host Mr. Roarke (now starring Michael Pena) who warns his guests with the classic line that guests must see their fantasy through to its final conclusion. Fans will be able to recognise the icons that honours the original series including the white plane flying into the island bringing a set of new guests.

See the trailer for the movie below;


The cast lineup that will be the island's guests are all established actors including Lucy Hale (Pretty Little Liars, Truth or Dare), Maggie Q (Nikita, Mission Impossible III), Austin Stowell (Dolphin Tale), Portia Doubleday (Carrie 2013) and Michael Rooker (Guardians of the Galaxy). Jeff Wadlow the director himself has directed films like Truth or Dare and Cry Wolf.

The new cast of Blumhouse's Fantasy Island (2020).

FANTASY ISLAND (2020) at a Glance

Directed by: Jeff Wadlow
Written by: Jeff Wadlow & Chris Roach & Jillian Jacobs
Based upon the television series created by: Gene Levitt
Produced by: Jason Blum, Marc Toberoff, Jeff Wadlow
Executive Producers: Couper Samuelson, Jeanette Volturno
Cast: Michael Pena, Maggie Q, Lucy Hale, Austin Stowell, Jimmy O. Yang, Portia Doubleday, Ryan Hanswen and Michael Rooker

The film's official synopsis:
In Blumhouse's Fantasy Island, the enigmatic Mr. Roarke makes the secret dreams of his lucky guests comes true at a luxurious but remote tropical resort. But when the fantasies turn into nightmares, the guests have to solve the island's mystery in order to escape with their lives.

Find out more about the movie at its official website here. And read what actress Maggie Q has to say about her role as Gwen on Fantasy Island.

If you are a fan of Blumhouse horror cum slasher films and relish on plot twists, be sure to watch Fantasy Island. The movie was released on Valentines Day in the United States as a horror date movie. However, it is still not too late to do that here in Malaysia. You can still bring your date to watch the movie available in Malaysian cinemas nationwide now from 27 February 2020.

Fantasy Island Promo in Malaysia 

In Malaysia, a promotional stint for Fantasy Island was carried out during Comic Fiesta in December 2019. A "vacation resort' booth was setup welcoming convention attendees to visit Fantasy Island. After viewing the movie trailer, potential guests were invited to join contest to win Movie Premiere invites by sharing their fantasies. It was not all fun games though as a creepy character inspired from Fantasy Island gave Comic Fiesta visitors warnings to the guests to expect the unexpected.

Mr. Roarke's Malaysian representative inviting attendees at Comic Fiesta 2019 to Fantasy Island.

But beware your fantasies may not turn out as expected.

Staff at Fantasy Island booth ready to serve your fantasies.,

Welcome to the Movie Premiere!

This week, Fantasy Island opens in Malaysian cinemas nationwide. And some fans took the opportunity to dress-up at the Movie Premiere in TGV 1 Utama.

The staff of Fantasy Island out for a movie night at the TGV Cinemas.

They wanna watch Fantasy Island... just making over 18 years old to enter R18+ movie.

Movie Premiere guests taking opportunity for photos with the Fantasy Island staff.

"Who's fantasy is this creepy slasher guy?"
Check out movie review by Star2 here then book your tickets to Fantasy Island at a cinema near you. Just "be careful what you wish for..."

Official music video for Fantasy Island "Don't Wish Your Life Away" by Jared Lee.

#FantasyIslandMovie #MYfantasyisland #NeverComingHome

Disclaimer: Fantasy Island and associated trademarks are copyright to Columbia Pictures / Blumhouse Productions, referenced here for fan service announcements without intent to infringe.

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