With a production start date set for this fall, filming on a remake of Tobe Hooper's classic haunted house horror movie Poltergeist is likely to begin very soon and the growing cast list has reflected that. Gil Kenan (Monster House) is set to direct the film, which will feature a family called the Bowens who move into a new home, only for the dream of a fresh start to go horribly awry when the Bowens' young daughter Madeleine is abducted.
Abducted by the TV people? Who knows. Given the updated treatment, perhaps the young girl will end up being stolen away by the iPad people, but supernatural forces are definitely involved. Like the Freelings in the original movie, the Bowens eventually call in a paranormal investigation team led by a parapsychologist called Dr. Brooke Powell.
Two new pieces of casting news have now been revealed, one of which is the very welcome report from Deadline that Jared Harris is confirmed for a leading role. Harris is perhaps most recognizable from his role as Professor James Moriarty in Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, or as Lane Pryce in Mad Men. He'll be filling one of the character spots that we heard about earlier this year when casting details were leaked: Carrigan Burke, a former academic who left the books behind him to become a TV personality on a cable show called Haunted House Cleaners. Carrigan sounds like he could well be a big of a smarmy character, something that Harris' diverse acting range could pull off easily.
Another potential new addition to the cast, according to The Wrap, is The Perks of Being a Wallflower star Nicholas Braun, who is in negotiations to play a grad student who joins the haunting investigation and is in charge of visually documenting and recording the paranormal events. If this works out, Poltergeist would be Braun's second horror movie in a short space of time, as he'll soon be starring in horror-comedy The Kitchen Sink alongside Vanessa Hudgens and Patton Oswalt.
Meanwhile Sam Rockwell (Moon), who last month was reported to be in early talks for Poltergeist's patriarch role, has confirmed the rumors in an interview with HitFix and said "We're trying to make it happen," though he couldn't confirm his casting. It definitely seems as though early talks have turned into later talks, though.
There have been enough decent horror movie remakes to justify remaining optimistic about Poltergeist, especially since the production is being steered by the hand of Sam Raimi, who recently produced a remake of his own classic horror movie The Evil Dead. At the very least this could be a fun horror flick with some updated special effects and a pretty great cast and maybe even an evil clown or two thrown into the mix.
Poltergeist is expected to arrive in theaters some time in late 2014.