On Adapting Silent Hill Lore, The Red Pyramid, and Using "Centralia" as a Temp Film Title
Published Wednesday, March 15, 2006
Christophe, what aspect of the Silent Hill lore did you find the most compelling and intriguing, and how did you use it in your film?
- Michael V
Perhaps the common link between all the stories of the Silent Hill world is the concept that this is a place where both reality and personality can be split.
I like the fact that this is where many dimensions intersect, and where you can exist on many planes. This fracturing between realities is reflected as a fracturing within a character. Characters can become multiple, like Mary and Maria in Silent Hill 2, and Alessa in SH1.
Because this is such an abstract concept, this was the most challenging aspect of trying to adapt the game. The first game tells the amazing story of an adult woman who also exists as two little girls, good and bad doubles representing who she was when she was hurt.
We are forced to realize in Silent Hill that we can be our own devil, our own God. This very Asian perception is so completely different to the Anglo/Christian concept of God and the Devil as separate beings.
So, what's the deal with Pyramid Head's head? That's not the way it's shaped. Maybe you might say its not the pyramid head we all know and love, to which I say: Ok, but what's the point of going all out to recreate the game's most famous antagonist but then take his head (for which he is named after) and change it entirely? Don't get me wrong - he looks super in the trailers, but would it have killed you guys to chamfer that leading edge he has?
- Ryan M
It is always interesting to take a CG character and try and make him real. Some time the logic of the design just can't work. The Japanese name for this character was actually 'Triangle Head.' It is not Pyramid Head or Red Pyramid as many fans call it. In fact, on his head is a basin and not a triangle at all. This shape works great as animation but it was impossible to make an authentic replica of the shape and actually have a real person move under it. We know as we tried. The big change in Red Pyramid for me was not his head as much as his body. In the game he has a very deformed body almost a hunchback. Instead we decided to make him a tall, powerful character a little like the Warrior God in " Stargate" that Patrick Tatopoulos created. Why? Because for me there is a little of Anibus, the Egyptian God of Death in the Red Pyramid.
Of course we consulted Konami and Akira Yamaoka with before signing of the new design which they were very enthusiastic about.
When Silent Hill the movie was first announced it had an alternate title. The title was "Centralia". Is there a truth to this and why if so?
- Mark M
I love this question. I was astonished by people's reaction to this title. The most important and obvious reason we called it "Centralia" was to keep the shooting secret. We didn't want the name Silent Hill to appear anywhere. The reason that we choose Centralia, which is a very famous ghost town in America is because it is actually is the basis of our script. Roger Avary discovered this town that had been destroyed by a coal fire and was completely uninhabitable. In the game, Silent Hill is also a mining town caught between the "Foggy" world and the "Darkness." Centralia was used as our reference to create a third dimension "Reality." I loved the fact that a lot of fans discovered that it was a clue.
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