H. P. Lovecraft is heralded as a genius for his nightmare visions of horror and for establishing the entire universe surrounding the Cthulhu universe (multiverse?). That mythos alone has gotten more writers rejected from gatekeeper publishing than any of us could count; ask any agent – one immediate way to be shot out of the gatekeeper system faster than you can say “archaic and stupid method of publishing” is to include the words “elder gods” in your query somewhere. Boom…rejected.
While the style of storytelling Lovecraft uses to tell his tales isn’t to my taste – I mean, can you say “show don’t tell” kiddies? I knew y’could – he nevertheless continues to influence and impact the imaginations of his cult-like followers, writers new to horror and dark sci-fi, and folks who just love to read a good, creepy story. His ideas and worlds are what captured so much attention. And, while Lovecraft’s imaginings are the stuff of late nights and things going bump in the night, they also make for horribly difficult translations to the big screen.
Well…they have so far, it seems. Any reasonable attempt to do so faded into the annals of obscurity, where they languished as cult classics or perhaps campy B-movie relics.
Until 2001, that is.