Have you ever wondered just where all of those monsters and horror stories everybody always talks about came from? So did Aaron Mahnke, which is why he launched his now infamous ‘Lore’ Podcast in 2015. Now, with the help of Amazon and producer Gale Anne Hurd, ‘Lore’ is being adapted into an all new horror series for Amazon’s streaming service. The television adaptation of ‘Lore’ will explore the real life history and origins of some of the most famous monsters and legends that history has to offer like werewolves, vampires, witches, and even axe-murderers! Amazon took the opportunity to announce that they had just signed on Aaron Mahnke and ‘Lore’ at New York
The television adaptation of ‘Lore’ will explore the real life history and origins of some of the most famous monsters and legends that history has to offer like werewolves, vampires, witches, and even axe-murderers! Amazon took the opportunity to announce that they had just signed on Aaron Mahnke and ‘Lore’ at New York Comic Con this past weekend, and that we can look forward to a ten-episode first season sometime in 2017. We were able to sit down with ‘Lore’ creator and host Aaron Mahnke as well as series producer Gale Anne Hurd at New York Comic Con to talk about what we can expect from ‘Lore’ when it premieres next year!
Could you tell us a bit about the new ‘Lore’ series? The new series is going to be a full expansion and evolution of the Podcast right?
Aaron Mahnke: Absolutely! The podcast is an anthology in itself. Episode by episode, exploring a new dark historical tale every episode, and we will follow that same rhythm in the television adaptation.
How hard was it to narrow it down to which stories to use for the show?
Gale Anne Hurd: We are still narrowing it down actually! We haven’t started shooting yet, so we are still assembling and developing. Obviously now not only has Glen Morgan joined the team but we are also bringing in documentary film makers because this is in the historical space. So there is a huge component of unscripted and historical mixed media, obviously with Aaron’s narration. We really want to get the combination just right!
Are you looking at what trends people are more geared towards right now to help decide what direction to take the show?
GAH: Well Aaron has all of the analytics and data
AM: Well for example, right now everyone is talking about ‘clowns’, right? All over the news. ‘Clowns’ are not a historical bit of folklore, they don’t go back hundreds of years and it’s not an episode that I’ve ever really thought about creating, but it does get people talking! What I really love to talk about though, are the topics that were relevant two or three hundred years ago, but are still just as relevant today! Like the story of Mary Webster, a story that was relevant in the 1690’s because the woman was tried as a witch, taken out, and hung. All because she didn’t fit in with the culture! Today we still “hang” the people, in a sense, that don’t fit in. So it’s just as relevant! That’s the beauty of folklore. It transcends hundreds of years to stay relevant.
What went into actually translating the podcast into a television series?
GAH: That’s teh thing, we are still really early on int he process. We just signed on for this show and meetings are taking place with the people are really going to help us bring this podcast to life, so it’s very early stages. That’s why we’re launching in 2017 and don’t have an exact premiere date yet. But we know that it’s going to be historical mixed media, there’s going to be a narration component, there’s going to be reenactments. The great thing about this, of course, is that there are characters at the core of each story that we are invested in, but they are all true!
AM: It’s not just dry history, it’s history with a pulse and a soul. And that’s important to tell those stories! We haven’t gotten there yet, but I can tell you it will be a lot of hard work to get there.
GAH: And we want to make it scary! If you look at a lot of unscripted “horror” on television, it’s not scary. My brand is scary. It’s scary, but also deeply character driven with people that we care about. Characters we can understand and relate to, because what we see them do… if any of you have listened to the podcast you’ll understand, but we need to get into the headspace that these characters are in and making decisions! Because later on, this is considered to be how we derived things like vampire mythology.
AM: Axe murderers!
GAH: We’re going to make all of that relatable, which makes it even scarier.
AM: When it’s cold, hard facts, it’s not scary. But when it’s a real thing with real connections, that’s when things get really frightening.
Competition wise, are you guys at all worried with ‘Tales From The Crypt’ coming back next year over at TNT?
GAH: Well ‘Tales From The Crypt’ is fiction! It’s so different! You know, I have no idea what they’re doing, but it’s always had an element of creepy-camp, which I love! But ‘Lore’ could not be more different from that.
AM: Yeah this isn’t ‘USA Up All Night’! What that does say though, is that there is definitely a hunger out there for short story horror on television! Whether it’s based in fact or completely made up like ‘Tales From The Crypt’, and that’s good for everybody! Because people are really interested in that. Because people are really interested in that.
From a producer’s standpoint, is it refreshing for you to work in this different kind of medium by taking this podcast and adapting it for television?
GAH: Absolutely! People ask me what was on my bucket list, and for a while there I didn’t have an answer. But now I realized that this is my bucket list! Because in my free time, I gravitate towards non-fiction. The books that are sitting by my table are the story of people behind this great fiction that we love! But they took their stories from some sort of truth, and that’s what Aaron’s podcast does. And we’re able to do it without having to make it up because Aaron has done all of the research! I don’t know if you know this, but up until maybe a week ago Aaron did all of his podcasts by himself. All of the writing, all of the recording, everything. So if there is anyone in this industry who is a “one man band”, the successful three-point-two-million people following that one man, it’s Aaron.
Aaron Mahnke’s ‘Lore’ will begin streaming next year on Amazon Prime.
Jordan is a Toy Columnist & Staff Writer here at ScienceFiction! Journalist, Musician, Toy Collector, and Overall Awesome Guy! For more on Jordan’s thoughts, toys, and wacky adventures, be sure to follow him on Twitter and Instagram.