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In 1992 The Johnsons was released in the Netherlands. A horror film where the cream of the crop of the Dutch film world had been working on. It was one of the biggest films of the year, won prizes at international film festivals, was released worldwide and even managed to aquire a cult status in the US. But few people know the history of the film and that it is actually a miracle that it has ever been made.

The Johnsons was originally a collaborative effort of an American film writing duo. The script they wrote was a black comedy horror which can be best described as a mix of Deliverance meets Crocodile Dundee. The film never got off the ground.
From there the script made its way to the Netherlands and into the hands of a Dutch production team. They saw something in the story, something that was unique for their country. They hired a director that had proved himself in making black comedy blockbusters. But it turned out he was impossible to work with. So much that he got fired three weeks before shooting the film. The project was shut down.

There was no one to take over the job so the producers turned to an old friend, best known for documentaries and art-house dramas. He got carte blanche and rewrote the whole thing. The dark humor disappeared and in its place came an anthropological structure with a supernatural myth and an underlying coming of age story.

Genre experts still find it the scariest and best horror film the Dutch soil has to offer, but many others still look down on it. Xangadix Lives! as a documentary doesnt only dives in the perculiar history of the Johnsons, but also shows that it is indeed an important film that has influenced and still influences people to this very day. Sometimes in the most unexpected places...