A Q&A with Cabin Fever director Eli Roth

Eli Roth’s directorial debut, 2002’s Cabin Fever, has become a cult classic. While the movie is ostensibly your stereotypical a-group-of-kids-go-to-the-woods-and-a-bloodbath-ensues horror movie, it established Roth as an edgy director with a knack for clever dialogue. Though available on DVD, the movie hasn’t been released on Blu-ray until now. Featuring a new, director’s cut and additional commentary by Roth and most of the cast, the Blu-ray version, which comes out tomorrow, differs drastically from the theatrical cut. While he's been busy attending awards ceremonies (he's part of the cast in Quentin Tarantino’s Oscar-nominated Inglorious Basterds), Roth recently had a minute to phone in to talk about the Cabin Fever re-release and his next feature film, Endangered Species, which he is still writing.

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How hands-on were you in developing the un-rated director’s cut of the film for the new Blu-ray version?
I was very hands-on. I’ve been pushing for this since the movie was re-cut by the studio years ago. They has always said they would eventually do one. There were a lot of regime changes at Lionsgate. Thankfully, there were a few people who kept it alive. It was actually the success of Inglorious Bastards that sparked it. The Hollyshorts Film Festival gave me an award last summer in August and asked me if I wanted to do a screening. I said that I wanted to do a screening of the director’s cut and there was only one print and I had it. We showed it, and it brought the house down. Everyone was saying, “Why isn’t this out?” After Inglorious opened, friends of mine said that they could get it pushed through.

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Jeff Niesel

Jeff has been covering the Cleveland music scene for more than 20 years now. And on a regular basis, he tries to talk to whatever big acts are coming through town, too. If you're in a band that he needs to hear, email him at [email protected].
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