A sequel to classic horror film The Exorcist (1973) was recently revealed to be in the early stages of development, with Halloween reboot screenwriter-director David Gordon Green having signed on to direct. According to THR, this new sequel project has now developed into a trilogy of films, with horror aficionados Blumhouse (Get Out; The Invisible Man) set to produce the new franchise entries for Universal.
David Gordon Green has had a varied career so far, starting off with dramas such as George Washington before transitioning into comedies like Pineapple Express. Most recently however, and likely the reason Universal have tapped him for this role, Green has moved into horror, directing the latest entry in the Halloween franchise. The 2018 film was well received critically and a hit at the box office, earning $255million worldwide from a budget of just $10million (Box Office Mojo). Two follow-up films have since been announced, both helmed by Green, with Halloween Kills set to be released on 15th October 2021. The third film, Halloween Ends, will be released in October 2022. If all goes to plan, the first of the new trilogy of Exorcist films will be released in October 2023.
While not many story elements have been revealed, we do have two casting announcements. Firstly, Ellen Burstyn is set to reprise her role as Chris MacNeil, a character she hasn’t played since the 1973 original directed by William Friedkin. Her performance earned her an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress, an award she went on to win for Martin Scorsese’s Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore (1974). She has since starred in critically acclaimed films such as Darren Aronofsky’s American Dream parable Requiem For A Dream and more recently Netflix drama Pieces Of A Woman.
Leslie Odom Jr. is also set to star. He will reportedly play a father who seeks MacNeil’s help as his own child experiences possession. Odom Jr. recently achieved acclaim for his role as Sam Cooke in Regina King’s One Night in Miami…. It was a performance for which he received a slew of awards, including Oscar and Golden Globe nominations. The actor also starred in the hugely successful Hamilton play released on Disney+, in which he played the part of Aaron Burr. This new Exorcist trilogy is yet another big project for the actor, who is already set to appear in upcoming ‘Sopranos’ prequel The Many Saints Of Newark and has been cast in the sequel to Knives Out.
As the streaming race continues to gather pace, Universal will likely look to this new trilogy of Exorcist movies as not only potential box office hits, but as valuable subscriber-grabbing exclusive content to their burgeoning streaming service Peacock.
There is currently no information on a potential title for this film.