It’s being reported that a director has been found for New Line’s English-language remake of The Orphanage, in the form of Larry Fessenden. Guillermo del Toro (who produced the original Spanish version) is producing and has co-written the script with Fessenden. A lead actress is currently being searched for.
The original version of The Orphanage (which is only a couple of years old) followed a woman who moves in with her husband and son to a house that used to be the orphanage that she grew up in. Before long her son starts to act strange, communicating with an imaginary friend. I’ll refrain from saying more for SPOILER reasons, but let’s just say it mixes drama and horror fantastically well.
Fessenden is well established on the indie-horror circuit, as an actor, producer and director. His IMDB resume includes the likes of The Last Winter, The Roost, I Sell The Dead and Wendigo. Del Toro apparently handpicked Fassenden to direct The Orphanage remake, seeing him as a “filmmaker who understood the conventions of the horror genre and could execute a movie that would be as scary and disturbing as the original but in an American context.”
Fessenden being tapped as director also continues the trend of del Toro mentoring up-and-coming filmmakers, having already done so with Juan Antonio Bayona (director of the original Orphanage) and currently Andres Muschietti (who’s directing Mama for Universal).
I’m glad they’re going with a director who has some experience in the horror genre for The Orphanage remake. I’m not happy with the idea to begin with, but I trust del Toro to do the original justice.
The Orphanage remake is in the development stages and doesn’t currently have a release date.
Sources: THR via Bloody-Digusting