Oren Peli will almost certainly be involved as a producer on Paranormal Activity 4 – which seems all but a sure thing right now, based on the box office results for the third installment in that low cost/high payoff supernatural horror franchise. However, for the time being, Peli is working on another horror/thriller altogether.
Principal photography has commenced on Peli’s currently-untitled project, which is based on his own original story. Commercial helmer Brad Parker is serving as director, while Morten Søborg (the Pusher trilogy, Valhalla Rising) has been brought onboard to handle the cinematography.
The film centers on a group of friends stranded in an eerie and desolate city that was abandoned in the aftermath of a nuclear disaster. Nature has begun to reclaim everything and as the sun sets on the radioactive ghost town, the group hears inhuman-sounding cries which indicates they are not alone.
Singer/actor Jesse McCartney is seemingly the biggest name actor set to appear in the film; the cast is otherwise composed of C-list stars and/or horror movie veterans, including Jonathan Sadowski (Friday the 13th), Devin Kelley (The Chicago Code), Nathan Phillips (Wolf Creek), Ingrid Bolsø Berdal (next year’s Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters), and Dimitry Diatchenko (a “Russian suit” in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull).
Between the Paranormal Activity franchise and Insidious, Peli has essentially carved out a niche for himself as a producer of successful low-budget horror genre titles that utilize old-fashioned (and generally cheap) scare tactics. That approach has allowed the aforementioned thrillers to also stand out in opposition to popular gore-friendly movies like those of the Saw or Final Destination franchise.
Peli’s horror projects to date have amounted to straightforward (but, for a lot of moviegoers, still effective) variations on the tried-and-true haunted house and ghost story genres. Likewise, the basic setup for his new film is more than a bit reminiscent of a classic title like The Hills Have Eyes… albeit, with an Eastern European setting.
That is to say: this new Peli-produced flick may not exactly reinvent the (horror genre) wheel either, but it could prove to be yet another successful spin on an unnerving narrative premise. We shall see…
We will keep you posted on the status of Peli’s new project (including, when it has an actual title) as more information is released.
Source: FilmNation Entertainment