Behind his sweet Hobbit facade, Elijah Wood may just be a nasty little gremlin. The affable 4-foot star (just a guess) of Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy and upcoming Hobbit films has officially signed on to star as sadistic serial killer Frank Zito in the Alexandre Aja-produced remake of the 1980 slasher Maniac.
Directed by Franck Khalfoun (P2), the redo finds antique mannequin salesman and deranged murderer Frank Zito (Wood) seeking women online to kill and scalp as revenge against his abusive mother whom he’s still haunted by in disturbing hallucinations.
The role is Wood’s second as a vicious serial killer. He played Kevin, an eerily quick-moving cannibalistic killer, in Robert Rodriguez’s Sin City (pictured above). BD, who first broke this story, also reports that French actress Nora Arnezeder (Safe House) will costar as journalist Anna D’Antoni, Frank’s love interest.
William Lustig’s original Maniac got feminist panties in a bunch when it was first released in 1980. Movie critics, including Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert, were disturbed by the film’s violence against women and called for its boycott at theaters.
To see a trailer and/or pick up a copy of Blue Underground’s 30th Anniversary Edition of Maniac on DVD and Blu-ray, go here.