Welcome, Atom Insider readers, to Donato’s Dungeon! Isn’t chasing news headlines a grueling and exhausting task? Ever wonder where you can get all the week’s biggest headlines in one easy-to-find place? That’s why I’m here, armed with a chainsaw and machete to slice through the week’s onslaught of horror news to find the most notable happenings in our genre community. Let’s see what sights I have to show you…
1. New ‘Paranormal Activity’ Movie In Development
You didn’t think The Ghost Dimension would be Toby’s last haunt, did you? Paramount and Blumhouse are developing a seventh Paranormal Activity movie that’s yet to be titled. No word on if it’ll tie into Katie and Toby’s original story, but I hope it will for redemption. The Ghost Dimension still stands as one of the worst franchise “enders” in horror history (not anymore, it seems). Paranormal Activity deserves better.
2. ‘Halloween’ Sequel Plans October 2020 Release
It seems like those “talks” Jamie Lee Curtis and Jason Blum had a few weeks back were indeed about a Halloween sequel! It’s been reported this week that “Universal will likely release the horror movie on October 16, 2020.” Curtis is set to return alongside Judy Greer and Andi Matichak as the Strode women prepare to battle Michael at least one more time. Also worth noting is David Gordon Green reportedly wrote the script and will return to direct, squashing rumors about Scott Teems writing a treatment. No word on if Danny McBride co-wrote alongside Green, but such details were not included.
3. Annie Potts Rumored To Return For Jason Reitman’s ‘Ghostbusters,’ Will Connect To Original
Talking to KTLA 5, actress Annie Potts – who played the Ghostbusters’ secretary Janine Melnitz – dropped that she believes she’ll be in Jason Reitman’s new Ghostbusters sequel. This is in no way a confirmation, but according to Potts:
I have heard some things. If it’s true, what I’ve heard — yeah, I think it’s gonna happen. I think I will [be in the movie].
The only confirmed original actor at this point is Sigourney Weaver as Dana Barrett, with speculation that Bill Murray and Dan Aykroyd have been wrangled as well. Add Annie Potts to the list of names who may or may not reprise their Ghostbusters role.
Meanwhile, Aykroyd has confirmed that Reitman’s Ghostbusters will connect to the original in a way not yet explored:
“Jason came up with this idea, which is just so good, everybody got it right away and understood. It will connect, better than anything, to the first movie. That’s about all I can say about it, but the two movies will connect, in a way that hasn’t been done before.”
4. ‘The Shining’ Child Actor, Stephen King Weigh In On ‘Doctor Sleep’ Trailer And Film
Danny Lloyd, famous for playing Danny Torrance in Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining, gave a rare interview in which he was asked to comment on Mike Flanagan’s Doctor Sleep trailer. Since the film is adapted from Stephen King’s sequel novel, much has been made about the actual sequel nature of Flanagan’s project. Here’s what Lloyd had to say about our first glimpse into Danny Torrance’s continued story:
I was surprised… It looked really good. I was curious since there is a fine line they have to walk with Stephen King and Stanley Kubrick. It looks like they found a way to pay tribute to both.
Meanwhile, King took to Twitter about Flanagan’s film:
This movie is going to blow your mind. If you have any left after IT CHAPTER 2, that is. https://t.co/cUPCfwZS08
— Stephen King (@StephenKing) June 13, 2019
Source: The Hollywood Reporter
5. ‘Amityville 1974’ Prequel Announced And Set To Shoot
You’re not wrong to think, “Didn’t we already see a prequel to The Amityville Horror about Ronald DeFeo Jr.’s massacre?” The Amityville Murders came and went this January with zero fanfare (since it wasn’t very good), so Wonderfilm Media Corporation decided to greenlight their own project about the famed Long Island murders. Casey La Scala is attached to direct (where my Grind fans at?), with principal photography beginning around November. Hopefully, it’s better than The Amityville Murders.
6. William Shatner Will Host ‘The UnXplained’ On History Channel This July
Coming to The History Channel (HISTORY) this July is a non-fiction series produced and hosted by William Shatner, The UneXplained, which will explore mysteries – you guessed it – yet to be explained (spelled correctly). Also on board is Executive Producer Kevin Burns, creator of HISTORY’s most popular and memeable show Ancient Aliens. Episode numero uno will air Friday, July 19 at 10 p.m. ET/PT. Here’s Shatner’s excitement over the project:
I’m thrilled to be hosting and producing the new HISTORY series The UnXplained. It’s an intriguing show that will offer viewers credible answers to questions about mysterious phenomena, while also leaving other theories left unexplained.
7. Chucky Kills Rex And Hamm In New ‘Child’s Play’ Posters
Add another two slain Toy Story 4 characters to the Child’s Play poster total. What’s this, six? Woody, Buzz, Potato Head, and Slinky Dog, now Rex and Hamm. We get it. Chucky doesn’t play well with others.
8. Cary Elwes Joins Blumhouse’s ‘Black Christmas’ Remake
Blumhouse recently surprised horror fans by announcing they’re remaking Black Christmas for a December release. You can check last week’s Donato’s Dungeon for the full cast list behind Imogen Poots’ doomed sorority sister, but this week brings confirmation of another added actor. Princess Bride and Saw star Cary Elwes has been tapped to play a “main part” in the film, but not yet specified. Maybe a father? Law enforcement? In any case, this Black Christmas update sounds to have more fight than the original or first remake:
In the new film, Hawthorne College is quieting down for the holidays. One by one, sorority girls on campus are being killed by an unknown stalker. But the killer is about to discover that this generation’s young women aren’t willing to become hapless victims as they mount a fight to the finish.
9. Netflix Mockumentary ‘Frankenstein’s Monster’s Monster, Frankenstein’ Gives First Look At David Harbour
Readers, I have no idea what this mysterious Netflix project is. It appeared on the streaming service’s July “New Arrivals” announcement, and now we have two images that showcase star David Harbour as a very pensive and dramatic-looking man. As per released information, Harbour leads viewers on a journey as he “uncovers lost footage from his father’s televised stage play, Frankenstein’s Monster’s Monster, Frankenstein.” Daniel Gray Longino (Kroll Show, PEN15) directs a screenplay written byJohn Levenstein (Arrested Development, Kroll Show), with a Netflix release date of July 16 (this year). Here’s the full synopsis:
Expect the unexpected in this over-the-top and often dramatic(ish) reimagined tale of mystery and suspense. With appearances by Alfred Molina, Kate Berlant, and more special guests, Harbour explores the depths of his family’s acting lineage to gain insight into his father’s legacy – all in 28-minutes.
10. Netflix’s ‘Chambers’ Cancelled After One Season
Those of you who enjoyed Uma Thurman and Tony Goldwyn in Netflix’s Chambers, bad news. After only one season, Netflix has pulled the plug. Typically their original shows make it three seasons before getting axed, so viewership really must have been low. The show might have been about surviving a heart attack, but ratings issues are a much more serious affliction, it seems.
11. ‘Nightbooks’ Coming From Netflix & Sam Raimi
It looks like J. A. White’s children’s fantasy-horror tale Nightbooks will be turned into a kiddie-horror anthology for Netflix. The Curse Of La Llorona writers Mikki Daughtry and Tobias Iaconis will pen a screenplay for Raimi and Rob Tapert’s of Ghost House Pictures, who will produce. I’m all for horror anthologies, and even more excited about more kid-friend horror (a genre that’s on the brink of a resurrection).
For those unfamiliar with the story:
A boy named Alex who is obsessed with scary stories, and is trapped by a witch in her modern, magical New York City apartment. His original hair-raising tales are the only thing keeping him safe as he desperately tries to find a way out of this twisted place.
12. Fred Armisen Horror Comedy ‘Too Late’ Announces Cast
D.W. Thomas’s Too Late pits Fred Armisen against comical and evil forces, and now we know who’ll be filling out the cast. Ron Lynch (Bob’s Burgers), Mary Lynn Rajskub (24), Alyssa Limperis (Comedy Bang! Bang!), Jenny Zigrino (Bad Santa Two), Will Weldon (This is Not Happening), and Brooks Wheelan (Saturday Night Live) have all been announced. That’s it. Nothing more to note except a plot synopsis:
The film centers on a lonely assistant who finally finds love and must escape her monster of a boss before she and her new love become his next meal.
13. Festival Favorite ‘Luz’ Dated For July Release
Hey. Do me a favor. If you live in New York City or Los Angeles and have a chance to see Tilman Singer’s Luz, don’t waste it. I caught this movie almost a year ago at Montreal’s Fantasia Film Festival, soon after acquired by Screen Media. It’s a possession story unlike anything you’ve seen before (which my review praises), especially for a feature film debut. Singer has such a bright future in horror (if he chooses) – find out why.
14. On-Set Stabbing Halts Robert Zemeckis’ ‘The Witches’
In troubling news, it’s confirmed that production has completely halted on Robert Zemeckis’ The Witches after a fight broke out on the Leavesden set between a rigger and a stagehand. No deaths were reported, but one of the men sustained a slashed neck injury bad enough to need hospital attention. The Ronald Dahl adaptation stars Anne Hathaway, Octavia Spencer, and Stanley Tucci, none of whom were said to have witnessed the altercation. Violence on the set of a children’s horror production – what is this world coming to?
15. Shudder’s ‘Creepshow’ Adds Grammy Royalty To Cast
In awesome news this week, we can confirm the following talents have joined Greg Nicotero and Shudder’s upcoming Creepshow revamp: Jeffrey Combs (Re-Animator), Bruce Davison (The Lords of Salem), DJ Qualls (Supernatural), plus musicians Big Boi and Kid Cudi. This show keeps collecting interesting casted names without any stoppage in sight. Here’s where each new player fits in:
Kid Cudi and Combs will star in the episode Bad Wolf Down, written and directed by Rob Schrab. Davison will star in Night of the Paw, written by John Esposito. Big Boi is featured in The Man in the Suitcase, written by Christopher Buehlman and directed by Dave Bruckner. DJ Qualls will star in The Finger, a previously unannounced Creepshow story written by David J. Schow and directed by showrunner Greg Nicotero.
And Now…This Week’s Horror Trailers!
The latest trailer for Ari Aster’s Midsommar sells the most unexpected aspect of his sophomore feature – how goshdarn funny it is. Don’t believe me? Check out my review, where there’s an entire section devoted to how this sunny-scary crowd pleaser is such a deadly good time. You’re not ready for Midsommar. I promise.
READY OR NOT
Samara Weaving stars as a newlywed who marries into a board game dynasty. Her husband’s family tells her there’s one more initiation before becoming a part of the family – survive a deadly game of hide & seek until dawn. That’s when bodies start piling up. YES. PLEASE.
THE TERROR: INFAMY
AMC’s hit chiller The Terror returns for a second season as The Terror: Infamy. The Ridley Scott-produced series sets its sights on WWII, specifically a Japanese-American internment camp haunted by an evil entity. I’m all for more horror television, especially if it’s as good as The Terror‘s first season.
INTO THE DARK: CULTURE SHOCK
Blumhouse and Hulu take on 4th of July with Culture Shock, which is getting rave reviews out of Cinepocalypse.
Tone Deaf goes the Don’t Breathe route with a heavy millennial vs. baby boomer voice, which didn’t strike me with the same excitement as Rick Bates Jr.’s previous works. Not one of my favorites out of SXSW, but those who like generational black comedies should check this one out.
“Sometimes pain can be beautiful,” says Dread’s latest release They’re Inside. Looks to be a marriage of found footage and straight narrative home invasion thrills.
Trespassers features a whole lot of trespassing. At least it’s true to the title.
A drought brings family drama, outlaw heroics, and a dystopian world where shootouts will kill you if dehydration doesn’t first.
INTERPRETERS: A C & EARTH CHRONICLE – QUANTUM 1
I am tripping balls right now, y’all. No idea what to make of this sci-fi barrage of video screens.
IRON SKY: THE COMING RACE
“The war between the Earth and the moon Nazis had led to all-out nuclear destruction.” This is uttered before Tom Green appears, before Space Hitler on a T-Rex appears, and before there’s a dinosaur chariot race. Give me this movie right now.
THE NIGHT SITTER
A babysitter has to fight three evil witches in what looks to be a gory standoff that’s above her paygrade.
Daisy Ridley in a killer comic book horror flick? Where did this come from?
Just going to highlight the NSFW nature of this Agony sequel trailer.
ANNABELLUM THE CURSE OF SALEM
Oh boy, the “Hopefully You Rent This On Accident” goofers are at it again. Don’t mix up Annabelle with Annabellum!
Missed last week’s Donato’s Dungeon? Click here to catch up.