Hollywood lined up plenty of successful horror projects in 2017, from Jordan Peele’s breakthrough hit Get Out to the revival of Stephen King’s IT to the Groundhog’s Day redux Happy Death Day. Looking ahead to 2018, there are already quite a few flicks poised to satisfy fright fans – from fact-based stories to supernatural scares and the reemergence of at least one classic character, the future looks very dark indeed, in the best possible way. Here is the list of Horror Movies of 2018 that will blow your mind.
Insidious: The Last Key
Demonologist Elise Rainier has been a staple of the Insidious series despite meeting her end in the first entry. After appearing only as a spirit in the second film, the character was given the full prequel treatment with Insidious: Chapter 3, which focused on one of the “case files” from her early days and explored how she came to meet partners Specs and Tucker. Now, Insidious: The Last Key is expected to return to Elise’s story, picking up where Chapter 3 left off — only this time, she’s investigating a haunting of her own family home. From the looks of the film’s trailer, it’s going to be just as chock full of jump scares as the rest of the series when it hits theatres January 5th.
Day of the Dead: Bloodline
Reimagining George is quite a tricky proposition, especially when we’re talking about 1985’s Day of the Dead, which is one of the more controversial entries in the Night of the Living Dead series, for its unprecedented level of violence and gore. Spanish writer/director Hèctor Hernández Vicens will attempt to make it work, though, with a loose adaptation titled Day of the Dead: Bloodline. Vicens made a few waves in 2015 with his controversial but well-received The Corpse of Anna Fritz, but the bodies should be a little livelier this time around. The new Day will drop on January 5th, with a simultaneous theatrical and Digital HD release.
Strangers: Prey at Night
The Strangers was a surprise hit in 2008 thanks to its slow-burn brutality and subversion of certain plot expectations. And even though the first sequel was announced shortly after the film’s release, it’s taken the better part of a decade to make it happen. The new film takes place at a trailer park in the middle of nowhere during a power outage and features Christina Hendricks as the head of a family whose road trip takes an unfortunate turn. Count on this one to creep everyone out when it lands in theatres March 9th.
The New Mutants
Writer-director Josh Boone is probably best known for his adaptation of the romantic drama novel The Fault in Our Stars, but not for long. A longtime fan of the Marvel comic book series The New Mutants, Boone apparently blew away Fox executives with his pitch for a film adaptation of the property—a straight-up horror movie based on a particularly dark run by legendary writer Chris Claremont and artist Bill Sienkiewicz. Unlike other Marvel mutant films, The New Mutants is much less sci-fi centric and much more focused on the fright factors of its characters. And with a cast that includes Split and The Witch alum Anya Taylor-Joy alongside Game of Thrones’ Maisie Williams and Stranger Things star Charlie Heaton, The New Mutants should be one to watch when it hits theatres on April 13th.
Based on one of the notorious internet memes of all time, Slender Man is expected to give cinematic life to the viral villain that has stalked the Web since 2009. The character was first born when a Photoshop contest produced a picture of the tall, thin, faceless stalker of hapless children. The forum poster who made the image, Eric Knudsen, even has a writing credit on the film under his forum handle “Victor Surge”—a development he probably didn’t expect when he set out to freak out a few people with his Photoshop skills. Sony/Screen Gems has slated Slender Man for release on May 18th.
The Purge: The Island
The ending of 2016’s The Purge: Election Year seemed to shut the door pretty firmly on the idea of more sequels. But the series has garnered such a huge fan base that The Purge: The Island is now expected to explore the beginnings of the title slaughter-fest. Creator James DeMonaco told Vulture that it’s set in Staten Island, New York, where the first experimental purge took place, and that it’ll begin with people being paid to participate, which incentivizes very poor people to try their luck at surviving the night of mayhem and violence, as DeMonaco said: “so you see the inception of how grotesque the idea of the Purge is, and the manipulation upon the society.” The Purge: The Island is set to hit theatres on July 4th.
The series that New Line is now officially calling the “Conjuring Universe” scored another box office hit with Annabelle: Creation, a pre-prequel exploring the origins of the sinister doll from The Conjuring, pushing the series’ worldwide box office take up over the $1 billion mark. Hitting those kinds of numbers can only ensure plenty more films in the pipeline, and first up is another spinoff—The Nun, which will add some backstory to one of Conjuring 2’s most terrifying characters. The story will centre on the character’s backstory as a Romanian nun who ended her own life, and the film will star Taissa Farmiga in the lead, with Bonnie Aarons reprising her role as the demonic nun Valak. The Nun will return to scare your pants off on July 13th.
The House with a Clock in Its Walls
It sounds like a rather Harry Potter-esque premise: a 10-year-old boy moves in with an eccentric uncle, only to find his house full of secret passageways and strange and creepy goings-on. It’s eventually revealed that his uncle is a warlock, a witch lives next door, and the house is a conduit for weird black magic rituals. But J.K. Rowling won’t be calling her lawyers anytime soon—this is the plot of the 1973 gothic horror novel The House With a Clock In Its Walls, and an adaptation is forthcoming with some serious talent on board. Notorious gore-master Eli Roth will direct a cast that includes Kyle MacLachlan along with Cate Blanchett, Jack Black and Renee Elise Goldsberry. This has out-of-left-field horror smash written all over it, as long as Roth can keep his more exploitative tendencies in check. Look for this film to hit theatres on September 21st.
Something in the Dark
This tech-based thriller has a unique premise: a blind woman has her sight restored by a pair of high-tech eyeglasses, but unfortunately, her vision may now be a little better than she bargained for, as she can now see ghosts. Further complicating matters, they look just like normal people, which means she can’t tell the difference between the dead and the living. Even worse, she begins to suspect that a lurking entity she keeps seeing might be coming for her. The film is expected to be dialogue-free, but if the super-creepy trailer by is any indication, Something in the Dark could be a breakout horror hit when it’s released on October 15th.
The Halloween reboot series by Rob Zombie was so-so at best, but with funnyman Danny McBride and producer David Gordon Green coming together to work on the concept for the new film, the new version of the holiday favourite might just work. The duo pitched directly to original director/co-writer John Carpenter, and Carpenter’s reaction was enough to get any fan’s heart racing. He wrote on Facebook: “David and Danny both came to my office recently with Jason Blum and shared their vision for the new movie and…WOW. They get it. I think you’re gonna dig it.” McBride has since explained his vision like so: “The first Halloween just works on such a gut level of there’s someone who’s escaped an asylum and he’s in this town.” “That’s what we were wanting to do with this.” Rather than being a reboot, it’s expected to be more of a sequel to the original film. Miramax will release the film on October 19th, just in time for the scariest night of the year.
The Witch is widely considered to be among the scariest films of 2015, a unique and ambitious picture that was the directorial debut of production designer-turned-director Robert Eggers. The film grossed ten times its budget, and for his follow-up, Eggers isn’t scaling back on his ambition. He’ll be helming a remake of the seminal 1922 horror classic Nosferatu, an undertaking only attempted once before—in 1979, by acclaimed German filmmaker Werner Herzog. Eggers’ gift for atmosphere should serve him well on this project, which even he admits is daunting. Briefly tempted to table the remake, he told Collider that he reconsidered: “It feels ugly and blasphemous and egomaniacal and disgusting for a filmmaker in my place to do Nosferatu next. I was really planning on waiting a while, but that’s how fate shook out.” It’s safe to say the remake is in very good hands—and if The Witch is any indication, fans might be in for the creepiest vampire flick in years.
Deep Blue Sea 2
The 1999 cult classic Deep Blue Sea is a film that has everything. There’s giant mutant sharks, a Bible-quoting LL Cool J and his parrot sidekick, and a thundering Samuel L. Jackson monologue that ends in the most hilarious and inevitable way possible.
It’s one of the most fun popcorn movies of the ’90s, and it even turned a decent profit, but plans for a sequel have repeatedly fallen through—until now. The Syfy Channel, purveyors of the finest shark-based schlock of this or any age, reportedly took on shooting the long-awaited Deep Blue Sea 2. It may not be getting a theatrical release, but Syfy seems like a good home for the project, which will hopefully live up to the fantastically cheesy legacy of its predecessor.
Puppet Master: The Littlest Reich
Puppet Master didn’t seem destined to crank out sequel after sequel when it made its direct-to-video debut in 1989, but the franchise has proved to have remarkable staying power. Focusing on evil puppets animated by an ancient curse and the man who created them, the film has already spawned no fewer than ten sequels. This year’s Puppet Master: Axis Termination—the first instalment since 2012—debuted in September on Amazon, but the team behind next year’s The Littlest Reich have assembled enough talent that fans are crossing their fingers hoping for a theatrical release.
The film will star stone-faced veteran actor Udo Kier as the deranged puppet maker Toulon, and genre queen Barbara Crampton will also make an appearance. Most of the action is expected to take place at a convention, where killer puppets will run amok, and producers have promised a bloody good time with plenty of practical gore effects when the film arrives sometime next year.
Piranha JPN: Teeth of the Piranha
1978’s Piranha has the distinction of being hands-down the best Jaws rip-off in a sea of ripoffs, and it also launched the career of director Joe Dante in much the same way that its less-loved sequel gave a boost to future Hollywood titan James Cameron. The modern reboot series, which began with 2010’s Piranha 3D, has nobly carried on the tradition of delivering maximum cheese along with copious amounts of gore and bare bodies. So, we’re pleased to report that the next installment—titled Piranha JPN: Teeth of the Piranha—is expected to drop sometime next year.
Although unrelated issues with The Weinstein Company and Dimension Films have caused delays in the release of Polaroid, a supernatural thriller originally slated for a Thanksgiving 2017 release, the film still looks bonkers enough to survive the executive changes underway at the studio. First-time feature director Lars Klevberg adapts from his own short film, telling the story of a teenage loner who discovers an old Polaroid camera in a mysterious store. The budding photo enthusiast soon finds that anybody she takes a picture of is in line for a horrific death at the hands of some malevolent force. While the premise might seem a touch familiar—or, specifically, like a mashup of The Ring and Final Destination—Klevberg’s film won Best Short and Best Cinematography awards at the prestigious Los Angeles Horror Competition, and all signs in the trailer point to a stylishly shot and creepy flick.
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