Audiences are growing increasingly tired of the Paranormal Activity series’ cheap trickery and minimalist scare tactics, as evidenced by the fourth installment’s weak critical reception (read our review) and opening weekend drop-off from both the second and third film. Nonetheless, the film’s $30 million opening take on a $5 million budget is good business, so it comes as no surprise to learn that Paramount is moving ahead with Paranormal Activity 5.
Moreover, the now-confirmed Latino spinoff (which is teased during the end credits of PA4) will be arriving on the scene first, next year. Scroll on down for more about both found-footage/horror projects.
Paramount is planning to release Paranormal Activity 5 in October next year (most likely the 25th, as Halloween falls on a Thursday). Deadline is reporting that the film will “advance the story,” but their report gives no indication as to who demonic Toby will be terrorizing (or possessing) this time. Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman directed the last two installments – working from a script penned by Christopher Landon – so there’s a reasonable chance Paramount will stick to its guns and bring the former pair back to helm PA 5.
Meanwhile, Landon is going to be directing the PA Latino spinoff (working from his own script, presumably). The film will emulate its predecessors by featuring a no-name cast, but also one composed primarily of Latino actors speaking Spanish for a healthy chunk of the running time. Landon is essentially being rewarded for his lucrative work at Paramount (he penned the spec script for Disturbia and the last three PA movies), with the spinoff serving as his sophomore feature directorial effort after the lesser-known comedy/thriller Burning Palms.
This untitled Latino spinoff has to overcome dwindling enthusiasm for not just the Paranormal Activity franchise, but also mixing supernatural horror elements with pseudo-realism of the found-footage format; on top of that, The Devil Inside and [REC] franchises previously explored Latin-Catholic mythology and horror through a found-footage lens. Landon therefore has to retread their tracks in a creative fashion (since dropping any sort of religious overtones goes against the idea of a Latino spinoff in the first place), while also finding a way to rejuvenate interest in a property that has grown increasingly reliant on gimmickry and spooky set pieces – to accommodate a convoluted, yet ironically-easy-to-compress, mythos.
Paramount plans to launch the Latino-spinoff next spring, when the competition is lighter and moviegoers are more willing to take a chance on a familiar ‘product’ (here, a side-quel to a drawn-out horror franchise). Still, Landon has his work cut out for him, with respect to silencing the belligerent masses (or haters, whichever you prefer) who feel the Paranormal Activity series should have been put out to pasture by now; their numbers only seem to be growing with each new chapter.
You can join the ongoing discussion about Paranormal Activity 4 by heading over to our Spoilers Discussion thread.