Tales From Tomorrow: Origins features Frankenstein — in the future. / Photo Credit: Carlos R. Hernandez (@crhla)
Force of Nature Productions is returning to the stage in the Halloween season with something classic and something new.
Tales From Tomorrow premiered in 2017 as an anthology series harkening back to innovators like The Twilight Zone and the newer Black Mirror. This month’s incarnation features six new stories, all telling tales of classic monsters — with one very big change: They’re set in a strange, unknown future.
You might think you know the origin stories of Frankenstein, Dracula, the Wolfman, the Mummy, Invisible Man and the Creature From the Black Lagoon — but Tales From Tomorrow: Origins turns them into something new and disturbing.
We chatted with FON Prods’ Sebastian Munoz about the production, which runs only two weekends in September.
Halloween Every Night:What inspired Tales from Tomorrow? It’s classic monsters with a sci-fi spin?
Sebastian Munoz: Tales from Tomorrow as it stands now, was born out of our love and appreciation of sci-fi and horror back in 2017. We wanted to create a different brand of show that was different from our typical comedic offerings. We have a wonderful team of writers that were up for the challenge and love the genres. So it was easy to get them onboard for the project. Compared to Black Mirror and Twilight Zone by reviewers, the Tales flagship run in 2017 played to sold-out houses in North Hollywood and Los Angeles, Calif. We’re very excited to finally be able to bring it back. This cast and crew have been nothing short of extraordinary.
HEN:Is there a theme that runs through the entire anthology? What is it?
SM: The best way to describe the theme is our tagline: “Stories from an unknown future from a world eerily similar, yet far stranger and more twisted than our own.” Each story typically takes place in a single location, in real time, with two to three characters, and has a twist or reveal somewhere in it. There’s a sense of urgency to them. The idea is to always keep the audience guessing.
HEN:How’s it feel to be back with a Halloween show after all this time?
SM: Quite honestly, we are like kids on the first day of school. Excited, nervous, a little out of practice, but overall thrilled to be able to provide an offering for our wonderful and loyal fan base. Being part of the Halloween season is something we always look forward to.
HEN:Have the events of the past few years played any role in the themes of the show?
SM: Most definitely. While historically we’ve have always remained as neutral as possible on world events, everyone in the Force of Nature family has come out of the last two years with different perspectives in life, love, work, family, etc. Those voices, those feelings can’t be ignored and it’s our responsibility to be able to express them in the most artistic, respectful, tasteful and intelligent way possible. It’s what connects us all.
HEN:Why did you choose classic monsters as the central characters of the anthology?
SM: We felt that by re-imagining these characters into a modern/futuristic setting would be a great way to express our messages while making it easy for the audience to follow. Everyone is very familiar with them, so the audience already has advantage from a character point of view. What they experience, in these new situations, is something we turn on its head and will surprise the audience.
HEN:Anything else you’d like to add?
SM: We are just delighted to be back and re-engage “live” with our audiences. While Zoom provided us a temporary avenue to stay engaged with our fans, nothing can ever beat the thrill, love, fear, sadness and every other feeling that comes from experiencing a show like this in person. We are social creatures and long for human connection. That experience is what we set out to create with all our shows. It’s our honor, joy and responsibility to do so.
The Gory Details Three Shows Remaining: Sept. 16 and 17 at 8 p.m.; Sept. 18 at 2 p.m. Location: Brickhouse Theatre, 10950 Peach Grove St., North Hollywood Tickets: $22 at fonprods.tix.com or at the door