At long last, horror sequel ‘Amityville: The Awakening’ is finally set to be seen – but what took it so long?
Given that 2017 has been a strong year for horror, most notably with the huge commercial and critical success of ‘It’ and ‘Get Out,’ it might under different circumstances be encouraging to see another new release scheduled for October.
However, ‘Amityville: The Awakening’ will arrive 33 months after it was originally set to open, with three further release dates missed in the meantime.
Production company Blumhouse – the horror hitmakers behind the ‘Paranormal Activity,’ ‘Insidious’ and ‘The Purge’ franchises, and this year’s acclaimed smash hit ‘Get Out’ – have long since proven they’re a dab hand at selling low-budget chillers to the wider audience.
Yet it seems that, for reasons as yet unclear, they faced a particular challenge this latest ‘Amityville’ movie; technically the nineteenth made in the series that began with 1979’s ‘The Amityville Horror,’ although this figure is misleading as the title is in the public domain, meaning a great many unofficial ‘Amityville’ movies exist.
Directed by Franck Khalfoun with a strong cast including Bella Thorne, Jennifer Jason Leigh and Kurtwood Smith, ‘Amityville: The Awakening’ was shot all the way back in 2014, and was originally scheduled for theatrical release in January 2015.
The film was later scheduled to open in April 2016, then January 2017, then June 2017, only to be cancelled each time.
However, ‘Amityville: The Awakening’ will now premiere online, being made available free via Google Play on 12 October, before a limited US theatrical run from 28 October; at present there is no confirmation if or when the film will play in UK cinemas.
While none of this would seem to bode well for the film, it should be noted that behind the scenes issues have had a major role to play. ‘Amityville: The Awakening’ was originally set to be released by Miramax, but when that company was sold in early 2016 this resulted in legal complications.
It is also worth noting that producer Jason Blum and director Khalfoun (responsible for 2012’s ‘Maniac,’ one of the few horror remakes to improve on the original) both have a strong track record.
Even so, with ‘Saw’ series revival ‘Jigsaw’ also opening in time for Halloween, it wouldn’t be too surprising if ‘Amityville: The Awakening’ goes straight back to bed soon enough.