A long-enduring horror sub-genre is that of human vs. nature, in which unfortunate - and usually unprepared - people are placed in a deadly scenario and forced to engage in combat with a vicious predatory animal in order to survive. Perhaps the quintessential film of this type is Steven Spielberg's Jaws, which is generally agreed to be a certified classic. Thanks to Jaws, the murderous shark is probably the most commonly used villain in the human vs. nature sub-genre; though in recent years, shark movies have become a lot less serious.
While it's easy - and accurate - to point to the intentionally silly Sharknado series as the downfall of sharks being treated as serious threats in horror films, there has sprung up almost a whole small industry dedicated to making low-budget shark flicks in the last couple of decades, many of which are produced by the legendarily frugal Roger Corman. Over the top schlock-fests like Sharktopus have taken the shark genre far away from the Jaws legacy, which inspired so much genuine terror that people were legitimately afraid to swim in the ocean for awhile.
Thankfully, there seems to be a mini-resurgence of the serious shark film going on, beginning with last year's widely-praised The Shallows. That movie presented a simple survival story, stranding a young surfer (Blake Lively) on a rock near a remote beach after a shark attacks her, then chronicling her attempts to survive. Continuing that trend is the upcoming 47 Meters Down, which casts Mandy Moore and The Originals' Claire Holt as two sisters who go diving in a shark cage off the Mexican coast. Their vacation turns deadly after an accident leaves them stranded at the bottom of the ocean, with limited oxygen and hungry great whites circling the area.
While already having garnered a few positive reviews within the horror community, 47 Meters Down has traveled a bit of a strange road to get to its upcoming American release. 47 Meters Down was initially acquired by Dimension Films back in 2014, before sitting on a shelf for a couple years. The company then announced plans to finally release the film direct to video last summer, albeit under the altered title In the Deep. Shortly before that could happen, Freestyle Media acquired the rights, with plans to give 47 Meters Down a wide theatrical bow in 2017.
The shark-infested flick is the latest directorial effort from rising horror name Johannes Roberts, who directed last year's supernatural horror effort The Other Side of the Door, and was recently announced as helming long-awaited sequel The Strangers 2. Roberts also co-wrote the script as well, and seems to be carving out a fairly impressive career path so far.
47 Meters Down will arrive in U.S. theaters sometime in 2017.
Source: Gulf Film