Clive Barker's 1990 sophomore movie should have been a very different story. Coming off the back of his storming 1987 debut Hellraiser, widely acclaimed (and remembered to this day) as one of the best British horror movies ever, the author-turned-filmmaker had a bigger budget and Hollywood studio backing as he set out to adapt his 1988 novel Cabal.
Unfortunately, as a result of behind the scenes difficulties and some creative missteps on Barker's part, Nightbreed struggled on release. It wasn't helped by a misjudged marketing campaign, selling it as a straightfoward slasher movie, when really it's anything but.
For all its many faults, Nightbreed's core concept - a subterranean city of monsters, with humanity as the bad guys - is inspired, and arguably ahead of its time. Barker had originally intended the film as the first chapter in a trilogy, and it shows: Craig Sheffer's Boone/Cabal, a troubled man who discovers he is in fact one of the Nightbreed, is set up like an undead Luke Skywalker.
However, Barker's bad experiences making Nightbreed and the poor reception it met on release would seem to have put him off filmmaking. To date he has directed only once more, on 1995's disappointing Lord of Illusions, and has otherwise concentrated on his novels and paintings.
Such a pity that the Nightbreed trilogy never came to pass. Still, there has long been talk that it could be revived as a TV series, which sounds like a very promising idea.