The Broad Street Bullies terrified hockey fans in the 1970s. Children in places like Boston and Buffalo feared that Dave “The Hammer” Schultz or one of the other toothless goons from those infamous Philadelphia Flyers teams lurked underneath their beds.
Now, thanks to Rob Zombie, that horror will be shown on the big screen. But the rock star/director says it won’t be a horror movie, per se.
“Maybe unintentionally,” he said. “It will be the true story. It will be gory.”
Departing from his usual slasher-film style that created cult-classics like “House of 1,000 Corpses” and “The Devil’s Rejects,” along with a remake of “Halloween,” Zombie envisions the Broad Street Bullies as blending the real-world turmoil of the mid-1970s with the nearly cartoonish violence on the ice.
“It will be a period piece,” he said. “Philadelphia was a terrible place in those days. It was also the time of Watergate and the gas shortage and Patty Hearst. It was social upheaval at the time.”
He has kicked around the idea of a Broad Street Bullies movie for a couple years. After all, as a child, Zombie had a soft spot for the Broad Street Bullies even though he grew up in Massachusetts cheering for the Bobby Orr-led Boston Bruins.
But the timing was never right. Then he saw the Oscar-nominated “Moneyball.”
“I watched ‘Moneyball’ and I said, ‘I got to do this Broad Street Bullies movie,” he said during a telephone interview last week.
First he has other commitments. His next film, “Lords of Salem,” is in postproduction. On Aug. 7, an album called “Mondo Sex Head” filled with remixes of classic Zombie songs hits stores. Plus, he and his band have been in the studio dreaming up a new album. And -- let’s not forget -- he embarks on a 28-city tour this fall with Marilyn Manson.
But what people have been asking about most is the future film about the Flyers.
“Everyone is into it,” Zombie said. “I’ve never seen anything quite like it.”
Zombie cautioned that the movie was still very much in the research phases. He’s reading anything he can find about the Flyers. But that hasn’t stopped Flyers great Bobby Clarke from getting pumped up. He told media outlets: “The great Rob Zombie making a drama feature film about the Broad Street Bullies is exciting and thrilling for all of us! I look forward to seeing it.”
Wait, the great Bobby Clarke just said, “The great Rob Zombie.”
“It’s weird,” Zombie said. “It’s very odd. It’s very nice; but very surprising.”