TV & Film Surf Report: (Don’t) Be Scared – Horror Is Now Trending On All Screens Which Is Great News For Killer Clowns, Swamp Things, And … Nuns!


Santa Monica, CA — With the recent success at the box office of the innovative trifecta of movies A Quiet Place, Get Out, and Stephen King’s It, the Horror genre is on quite a roll.

So much so, I have almost forgotten Universal’s dreadful launch of its Dark Universe franchise with the miscast Tom Cruise in The Mummy. So so bad. Universal, however, is not giving up on Horror, though, as it has another sequel to John Carpenter’s successful Halloween franchise hitting theatres in October and recently won a bidding war for James Wan to produce and to direct Stephen King’s The Tommyknockers

Television knows a Good Trend, so expect TV to follow.

Or, has it already been leading?

Ahem, American Horror Story, The Walking Dead, Fear the Walking Dead, Twin Peaks: The Return, The Exorcist, The Frankenstein Chronicles, Ash vs. Evil Dead, Midnight, Texas, Hannibal, and Penny Dreadful ring any bells?

Sad news for The Exorcist at Fox which has been cancelled after two seasons as well as for Ash vs. Evil Dead fans as Starz Cancels Horror Series After 3 Seasons

Personally,  Horror is not my genre of choice (although, I loved Penny Dreadful on Showtime). And yet, I did see all of the Wes Craven Scream movies, and I do feel that Stephen King’s Carrie is a classic. I never saw any of the Nightmare on Elm Street films nor did I buy a ticket for The Conjuring franchise which is expanding each year including a 3rd Annabelle Spinoff and New Entry, The Nun


Annabelle 3 opens July 3, 2019, which is a major opening date so New Line expects this film to be a big hit. James Wan executive produces. The Nun hit theaters Sept. 7th and Opens to a Heavenly $135m Worldwide, per THR.

I gotta say, though, I really enjoyed Get Out, but I thought it was more Thriller than Horror film (up until the last few minutes). Tip o’ the hat to screenwriter Jordan Peele who totally deserved winning both the WGA Award and the Oscar for Best Screenplay.


A Quiet Place is that rare hit for Paramount Pictures, so expect the studio to get in business on a long-term basis with actor/director John Krasinski who also toplines the studio’s TV reboot of Jack Ryan which is set to air via Amazon (in August! renewed three months before it premieres!):

Amazon Renews Tom Clancy’s JACK RYAN

Krasinski really made you care about that family (who we knew nothing about, backstory-wise) as they tried to survive Alien-esque monsters attracted to sound. Kudos to those child actors. Terrific. The film is still in theaters, and the studio has already Put A Sequel in Development

As for Stephen King’s It, actors Bill Hader and James McAvoy have signed on for the sequel. So, prepare for more Pennywise. Director Andy Muschietti promises It: Chapter 2 Is So Scary You’ll Need Adult Diapers

As already noted, Jamie Lee Curtis is set to return in the next installment of John Carpenter’s Halloween franchise, as well. David Gordon Green and Danny McBride scripted the Sequel

Lots of movies in this genre (including remakes of The Grudge and Pet Sematary) coming down the pike headed directly for either the metroplex or your various devices, including Guillermo del Toro’s adaptation of Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark


Meanwhile in TV, here’s what’s cooking across All Platforms:

  • Lovecraft Country at HBO. Jordan Peele (Get Out) adapts Matt Ruff about a guy traveling across America in the ’50s and coming across monsters.  J.J. Abrams EPs.
  • Into the Dark at Hulu. Dermot Mulroney and Tom Bateman (Da Vinci’s Demons)star in this unique series from Blumhouse Television that revolves around one holiday each month.
  • What We Do In The Shadows at FX.  Taika Waititi (Thor: Ragnorak) adapts his own feature film for TV as a half-hour comedy which follows three vampires who have been roommates for hundreds of years. Looking forward to this! Well done, FX.
  • Swamp Thing at DC Digital. James Wan executive produces. Mark Verheiden and Gary Dauberman write and EP.
  • V-Wars at Netflix with Ian Somerhalder (The Vampire Diaries) fanging up once more in a 10-episode adaptation of a novel. Haven’t read it (yet).
  • The Order at Netflix. A college freshman joins a secret society that includes a lot of monsters. 10 episodes ordered.
  • NOSA42 at AMC is an adaptation of the Joe Hill novel about a woman who tracks a man who steals the souls of young children. 10 episodes ordered.


  • The Purge at USA/SyFy. One day each year, murder and mayhem are legalized in this TV adaptation of the Blumhouse film.
  • The Vampire Chronicles at Hulu. Paramount TV and Anonymous Content settled on Hulu for those 11 Anne Rice novels featuring The Vampire Lestat, however, they have yet to announce an international distributor, so fans worldwide await that news. Bryan Fuller (American Gods, Hannibal) was attached to EP but quickly bowed out for undisclosed reasons, so Christopher Rice (Bone Music, Ramses the Damned: The Passion of Cleopatra) exec produces without a showrunner.
  • The Passage at FOX. Ridley Scott EPs the adaptation of Justin Cronin’s novel set in the not-too-distant future where a military experiment gone wrong unleashes a vampire plague upon the continental US. Really loved this book which was so disturbing on so many levels.
  • The Haunting of Hill House at Netflix. Timothy Hutton stars in this 10-episode adaptation of Shirley Jackson’s novel.
  • The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina the Teenage Witch at Netflix. This spin-off from The CW’s Riverdale goes much darker. Series order (20 eps!). Kiernan Shipka (Mad Men) Stars, Per Vulture.
  • American Horror Story: Apocalypse at FX.  Joan Collins toplines the newest season of Ryan Murphy’s successful franchise which promises a crossover return to both AHS: Murder House and to AHS: CovenHere’s the Trailer, Per Rotten Tomatoes. Premieres Sept. 12th on FX.
  • The Birds at BBC. Am really looking forward to this British re-make of the Alfred Hitchcock classic.
  • The Witcher at Netflix. A group of young people hunt demons in this adaptation of Andrzej Sapkowski’s books. Sean Daniel (The Mummy) exec produces. Sounds like Buffy 2.0 to me!  Henry Cavill (Mission Impossible: Fallout, Justice League) set to star. Eight Episodes Have Been Ordered, Per Nerdist.



N E X T   U P:

Death of The Daily Campus at SMU


About Surfing Hollywood

Steve La Rue is an internationally recognized leader in Film & Television with 20+ years experience as a Development Executive championing such series as Buffy The Vampire Slayer, The X-Files, The Simpsons, King of the Hill, Battlestar Galactica, and Farscape. He writes, blogs, and consults on All Things Entertainment from his home at the beach in Santa Monica, CA, where he balances his life by surfing every damn day.
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