Sony has bumped Goosebumps 2 from its original September 2018 release date to October. At one point the film was actually set for a January 2018 release, but it keeps sliding deeper into the calendar. In addition to the shuffled release dates, the movie has also reportedly received a new title. Formerly known as Goosebumps: Horrorland, it will now be dubbed Goosebumps: Slappy's Revenge. Ari Sandel (Monster High) has taken over directing duties, replacing Rob Letterman. Letterman will instead direct the newly announced Ryan Reynolds in Detective Pikachu.
Adapted from the popular children's horror books by R.L. Stine, 2015's Goosebumps successfully tapped into '90s-kid nostalgia, grossing $85 million domestically. The film starred Jack Black as Mr. Shivers, an overprotective father ultimately revealed to be R.L. Stine himself (so meta). As "Stine" explains, he wrote the Goosebumps books to trap the supernatural monsters who menaced him as a child. But now the various spooks are out of the books and into the real world. Goosebumps 2 will reportedly revolve around the evil dummy Slappy, voiced in the first film by Black. After some initial doubts, it appears Black will return for the sequel.
Deadline reports that Sony has adjusted their release plans for Goosebumps 2, moving the date from September 21, 2018 to October 12. That positions the spooky - but family-friendly - Goosebumps sequel closer to Halloween. It also prevents the Jack Black vehicle from competing directly with The House With a Clock in Its Walls, also starring Black and also set to release on September 21. Goosebumps 2 now gets a Columbus Day weekend release. That date pits it against the grown-up horror movie Hellfest and Damien Chazelle's Neil Armstrong film First Man.
Deadline also reports that Studio 8's Alpha, from director Albert Hughes, has shifted from March 2, 2018 to September 14. The survival story set during the Ice Age stars Kodi Smit-McPhee, Leonor Valera and Natassia Malthe. The film had been set to square off against Jennifer Lawrence's spy drama Red Sparrow on March 2. It will now go up against Dwayne Johnson's wrestling drama Fighting With My Family and the YA sci-fi thriller The Darkest Minds.
Sony found a winning formula with the first Goosebumps, blending Jack Black's talents with the R.L. Stine approach to supernatural scares. '90s kids turned out for the first movie and brought their own kids along, exposing a new generation to the Goosebumps brand. Though Goosebumps 2 will have a new director, screenwriter Darren Lemke will stay aboard, co-writing with Rob Lieber (Peter Rabbit). Most importantly, Jack Black apparently remains in the lead, lending his unique talents to what officially has become a franchise.
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