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Guillermo del Toro-produced Antlers inspired by The Exorcist and Halloween

The Exorcist William Friedkin

Fresh off of winning Oscar gold with his latest genre film THE SHAPE OF WATER, genre fan favorite turned Hollywood favorite Guillermo del Toro is producing a horror project called ANTLERS for WATER distributor Fox Searchlight.

ANTLERS will be directed by CRAZY HEART / BLACK MASS / OUT OF THE FURNACE / HOSTILES director Scott Cooper, who will be working from a screenplay written by Henry Chaisson and Channel Zero creator Nick Antosca (based on Antosca's short story The Quiet Boy.) Once Chaisson and Antosca have completed the script, Cooper will also be doing his own polish on it. The story centers on

a fourth-grade teacher who tries to help a troubled boy in her class, only to discover that he’s been hiding a nightmarish secret. Now something terrifying is coming for the boy, and she has to protect him.

 

This will be Cooper's first horror film, and he told Collider that his inexperience in the genre is partly why del Toro brought the project to him.

[Guillermo] said I’ve obviously never seen you direct a horror film, but there’s a lot of horrific moments in your movies, so I’m more interested in someone who doesn’t work in that genre to step into it. Which is I guess a bit like Friedkin in a sense, having not directed in that genre before he took on The Exorcist. So I find that exciting, I’ve made my musical of sorts and my personal film with Out of the Furnace and my anti-gangster gangster movie, and then the Western…"

While figuring out his approach to the genre, Cooper is looking back to some of its greatest classics for inspiration, including the aforementioned THE EXORCIST.

I was so influenced early on by the work of John Carpenter, like Halloween, or certainly The Exorcist which is a favorite of mine, or even Tarkovsky’s Stalker. So I’m able to bring all of that into one film, which is exciting."

A blend of THE EXORCIST and HALLOWEEN with a touch of Tarkovsky... if these influences are evident in the finished film, it sounds like we're in for something special with ANTLERS.

Cooper isn't sure if ANTLERS will be his next directorial project or not, but "it feels like ANTLERS might take the pole position."

Extra Tidbit: Are you interested in ANTLERS?
Source: Collider

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