Octavia Spencer joins Robert Zemeckis’s adaptation of The Witches

Last Updated on July 30, 2021

Octavia Spencer Gifted

The trailer for the Blumhouse thriller MA, which stars Octavia Spencer as the title character, is supposed to arrive online sometime today. While we wait to see what that's going to be like, Spencer has already lined up her next genre project, signing on to co-star in director Robert Zemeckis's adaptation of the Roald Dahl novel THE WITCHES.

Anne Hathaway is set to play the Grand High Witch in the film, which will tell the story of 

a 7-year-old boy who has a run in with real-life witches.

Newcomers Jahzir Bruno and Codie-Lei Eastick will be playing boys who have run-ins with witches, and Spencer is playing the grandmother of Bruno's character.

A previous adaptation of THE WITCHES was directed by Nicolas Roeg and released in 1990. While writing the screenplay with Black-ish creator Kenya Barris, Zemeckis is trying to stay closer to the source material than Roeg's film did… Although Zemeckis's take on the material has a different setting than Dahl's novel. Published in 1983, Dahl's story was set in then-present day Norway and England. Zemeckis has moved the setting to the southern U.S. in the 1960s.

Zemeckis and Jack Rapke are producing THE WITCHES through their company ImageMovers, along with Guillermo del Toro, who wrote a previous draft of the script, and Alfonso Cuaron.

Spencer won an Oscar for her role in THE HELP, and has been nominated twice more since then. Her previous genre credits include THE SHAPE OF WATER, Rob Zombie's HALLOWEEN II, and DRAG ME TO HELL.

Source: Variety

About the Author

Cody is a news editor and film critic, focused on the horror arm of JoBlo.com, and writes scripts for videos that are released through the JoBlo Originals and JoBlo Horror Originals YouTube channels. In his spare time, he's a globe-trotting digital nomad, runs a personal blog called Life Between Frames, and writes novels and screenplays.