Catherine Hardwicke Re-imagines Red Riding Hood

The trailer for the new movie Red Riding Hood, directed by Catherine Hardwicke, has been heating up the Internet.  The classic fairytale becomes a sexually charged romantic thriller set in a fantasy world where the big bad wolf is a shapeshifting werewolf.

Attempts to re-invent the story of "Little Red Riding Hood" are nothing new.  Tex Avery did it way back in 1943 with the animated Red Hot Riding Hood.  Neil Jordan explored similar themes of dangerous lycanthropes and coming of age symbolism in The Company of Wolves.  Kiefer Sutherland and Reese Witherspoon starred in a "Red Riding Hood" takeoff called Freeway.  The excellent independent film Hard Candy, starring Ellen Page, has some modern day twists to the classic story, even if it is not officially based on the fairytale. 

It may not seem like a new idea, but with Catherine Hardwicke at the helm the film is sure to be a visual and emotional treat with some good action thrown into the mix.  Harwicke has directed a number of well-made motion pictures: Thirteen, starring Evan Rachel Wood, Nikki Reed, Holly Hunter, and Jeremy Sisto; the surf-and-skateboard cult favorite Lords of Dogtown; The Nativity Story, starring Keisha Castle-Hughes; and of course the first Twilight.

Producers of Red Riding Hood are hoping to tap into that Twilight audience.  The new version features the always lovely Amanda Seyfried as the titular heroine caught in a love triangle.  The lush cinematography and eye-catching imagery, not to mention the chills and thrills of werewolf horror, should attract more than just the teenybopper demographic. 

Red Riding Hood is set to premiere in theaters during March 2011.  Click here to see the trailer.