Piranha 3D

Gene Page / Dimension

Piranha 3D follows a simple premise: Coeds find their spring break hookups interrupted by a school of prehistoric, predatory piranha, and a ragtag band of strangers (including Elisabeth Shue, Jerry O'Connell, Ving Rhames, Adam Scott, Gossip Girl's Jessica Szohr and Vampire Diaries cutie Steven R. McQueen) have to either fend off the razor-toothed creatures or become human fish food.

But there so much more to the R-rated blood 'n' babes extravaganza. Here's the scoop on too-hot-for-TV ads, the James Cameron connection and 3-D boobs:

1. The major networks said "No way!" to the TV spot: Piranha 3D makes no qualms about being a gorefest full of scantily clad, booze-happy spring breakers, and the studio behind the thriller wanted to make that abundantly clear in the flick's TV spots.

But after viewing the 30-second commercial the filmmakers provided, the networks weren't exactly on the same page (shocking!). Check out a few actual network objections, courtesy ryanseacrest.com:

The CW: Need to loose the shot of the woman in the thong doing dry humping/grinding motion on top of other girl with thong

Fox: Please lose shot of (woman in black 'peace' bikini with blood splattered on her body & face), [and] make sure the beer bottle in guy's hand is generic or paint over.

2. It's a remake of a 1978 cult classic that launched a handful of Hollywood careers: Original Piranha director Joe Dante went on to direct genre favorites like The Howling and Gremlins during the '80s, while screenwriter John Sayles subsequently earned Oscar noms for writing Passion Fish and Lone Star. Three years later, a 27-year-old James Cameron made his directorial debut with the sequel Piranha II: The Spawning. So in a way, we wouldn't have Avatar's Pandora if it weren't for Piranha's flesh-eating fishies.

3. Expect tons of blood in the water, cheeky gore and, yes, nudity: Staying true to the original, French helmer Alexandre Aja (The Hills Have Eyes) promises plenty of tongue-in-cheek splatter and killer CG fish swimming right off the screen and into your lap. He's also managed to work in an entire subplot involving a slimeball media mogul (Jerry O'Connell—and his shriveled, chomped-on privates) who runs his own Girls Gone Wild-esque franchise and chases around pretty young things like Jessica Szohr. You know what that means, right...3-D boobs!

4. It's got a B-movie cast for the ages: After mocking her own flagging career in Hamlet 2, Elisabeth Shue shows she isn't above a little fun as the lady sheriff of ill-fated party town, Lake Victoria. Joining her are some of our favorite familiar faces from the '70s, '80s and '90s: Shue's Back to the Future II costar Christopher Lloyd, Dina Meyer and even Richard Dreyfuss, who unofficially reprises his role from Jaws. (How much do you want to bet someone says, "We're gonna need a bigger boat?")

5. Sadly, it was only filmed partially in 3-D: Cameron's top notch Avatar technology was reportedly a tad too costly for this modestly budgeted 3-D affair, so Aja could only use real 3-D to film his CG piranhas. Actual filmed footage of his human cast had to be converted into 3-D, à la Clash of the Titans...so if you're a 3-D purist, be warned. Those of you in it merely for the gore and boobs? You'll be just fine.

So what do you think? Will these piranha get you in theaters this weekend?


Photos: Totally New Releases!

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