Yes, for over two years now we’ve been very aware of the Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark movie that has been in production. When the first news that they were working on that film was announced, I was looking it as a great subject for a documentary. I could never prove that. It was just an idea I was batting around. And now here we are. Their movie progresses and mine does as well.
More news about the documentary is coming soon. But in the meantime, I thought I would go off on a tangent that I’ve been going down lately in amongst all this planning. Censorship. Banning. Challenging. These are a bunch of words that have been tossed around a lot in the last 30 years (and of course, much longer) while their definitions and the power they hold can vary a lot from one person and usage to another. On one extreme you have Communism, dictatorships, and Fahrenheit 451 (a title that has become synonymous with the censorship cause and yet is quite misunderstood). On the other hand you have reasonable objections to what and when children are introduced to different books and media. Somewhere in between all of that you ideally have a reasonable debate about literacy, choice, education, responsibility of schools and libraries versus parents, and a host of other related topics that feed into the topic. This isn’t easy. And I don’t think it should be painted entirely as black and white.
Busy, busy, busy! I just wanted to throw a quick shout-out and update for all of you. The last month a ton of planning has taken place. This planning will turn into actual shoot days, primarily in July and perhaps a little into August. We will be filming in New Jersey, Boston, and just outside Chicago. I plan on taking lots of photos along the way, and so although it seems like we are a little silent right now, it’s just because we have a lot of stuff developing but not that much to really show. Once that results in actual behind-the-scenes type of stuff that can be shared, I will throw some out your way.
Sorry we haven’t posted on here for a little while. We’ve just been so busy! We will be launching our crowdfunding campaign very soon and so we have a ton of stuff to “unleash” once we do that. I know it’s making me both excited and anxious to really show people what we’ve been working on. This is Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, people. We want to do this right and make the fans of the Scary Stories books happy and engaged and excited to see a full-length documentary. Through the process of putting all of this together, it has really made me revisit why we took on this venture in the first place. Why this book series and why a documentary?
Wow, this is a tough one. These stories are so visceral and personal. A certain story could be one that you remember reading as a kid and always stuck with you. Another story could be one that you found particularly funny or clever. There could be one that, paired with the illustration, could be particularly effective to you. What is the best Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark story for you? If I had to choose just one story, interestingly enough I would go with the very first tale, The Big Toe.
I grew up reading this book series and the illustrations and stories always came to mind when thinking back on them. What is interesting is that memories of a particular Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark poem or two have occasionally come to mind and overshadowed the illustrations or short stories. For some the poems are the most memorable part of them. Perhaps it is the silliness that often accompanied them. Perhaps it was how they could be put to music and would inevitably get stuck in your head. So what are the best of them?
Many videos, pictures, and blog posts about Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark online are homages, tributes, and all sorts of cultural trinkets of the book series and its impact. Because I’m working on and researching this documentary I make sure I take note of anything in regards to the books that pop up on the internet. One that came up just recently I think says a lot about the topics we want to explore in this documentary.
Congratulations, you may have just found what will become one of the most controversial and debatable types of subjects that this blog will explore. More Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark is the 2nd book in the series, and actually keeps the quality quite high. In outlining what I consider the “best” stories from More Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark (or any of the books), it must be first pointed out that this is entirely subjective and based on my own experiences in reading the stories in this particular book. That said, I’m going to do it anyway.