The team that brought us the horror hit Host is back at it with a great new idea. Host writer-director Rob Savage and writer-producer Jed Shepherd are teaming with Studiocanal for a horror movie that’s a cross between a prison break flick and a haunted house movie. The story follows a group of female prisoners who stage a jailbreak, only to find themselves facing off against a “dark presence.”
I’m a big fan of Rob Savage. I first became aware of the filmmaker with his excellent short Dawn of the Deaf (watch it here), and – like seemingly everyone else right now – I really enjoyed his recent film Host, a horror movie shot over Zoom that’s been getting a ton of well-deserved buzz. (We even did a real Zoom seance with Savage and the cast, which you can watch here.) Now, Savage and his Host co-writer/producer Jed Shepherd have something new lined up, and it sounds promising.
Per Deadline, the project is described as “The Conjuring behind bars,” and it sounds like a little bit of The Descent has been thrown in for good measure. Savage told the publication that the movie is a “melding of the prison escape movie and the haunted house movie, in which a group of women who stage an unsuccessful breakout attempt discover a secret room that unleashes a dark presence that marauds the halls at night. The film will have a claustrophobic quality akin to The Descent.”
Teresa Sutherland will write the film, and while they haven’t decided yet if it’ll be set in the US or UK, the story involves British folklore. Savage also added: “None of the characters are conventional good guys. So, there are opportunities for interesting casting choices with actors playing against type.” The filmmaker also said that this movie will not be “a conventional sequel to Host,” but “more of a follow-up film.” Savage continued: “If Host was about the horror of lockdown, this is about the fear of going back outside, of the world reopening. It won’t have a conventional development process so we’re putting the gas on it now and we’re in talks with various industry partners about it.”
After Host, I’m all-in on whatever Savage wants to do next, but it helps that this concept sounds pretty damn great. There’s a lot of potential here, and there’s a way to make this sort of scenario seem both familiar and fresh at the same time. I’m excited to see how it all turns out. Meanwhile, if you haven’t watched Host yet, head on over to Shudder and check it out immediately.
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