Production on Doctor Strange director Scott Derrickson's new movie just wrapped a couple of weeks ago and now a release date for the project has already been set. Universal Pictures has announced that The Black Phone, the latest collaboration between Derrickson and Blumhouse, will be released on January 28, 2022. THR reports the film is the first to plant a flag on that particular release date but will arrive in theaters one week after Sony Pictures' new Marvel movie Morbius and two weeks after the upcoming fifth Scream movie. Derrickson reunites with his Sinister star Ethan Hawke who will star in the adaptation.
Based on a Joe Hill short story from the 20th Century Ghosts collection, the plot of The Black Phone, as described by the trade is that it follows "a kidnapped kid who finds himself in a soundproof basement surrounded by the remains of other victims. When night falls, the antique — and disconnected — telephone in the room begins to ring with the calls from the dead." Hawke will play the kidnapper with For All Mankind's Mason Thames playing the young boy. Jeremy Davis is set to play the boy's father with Madeleine McGraw taking on the role of his sister and IT: Chapter Two's James Ransone in a secret role.
Derrickson co-wrote the script with C. Robert Cargill, who also worked with the director on Sinister and the first Doctor Strange movie.
The new film marks the first time that Hawke and Derrickson have worked together since the 2012 horror feature but the actor previously theorized that they almost worked together on the Marvel Studios movie Doctor Strange.
“I would love to work with Scott [Derrickson] and I have a sneaky suspicion that Scott wanted me for that too,” Hawke said on the Happy Sad Confused podcast back in 2015, but noted that he was perhaps not the biggest name to make it work. “If people are gonna put up with somebody like me, they wanna make sure you’re gonna put asses in seats, and there’s a lot of actors that are gonna put more asses in seats than me...There’s a tremendous amount of salesmanship that’s now really important to a studio like that. It’s a tremendous amount of time in your life where you’re working, and you’re not acting.”
Ironically ahead of the pair getting back together Hawke has joined the Marvel Cinematic Universe and Derrickson has departed it. The actor has been tapped to play the villain in Marvel Studios' planned Moon Knight series on Disney+ while Derrickson previously dropped out from directing the upcoming Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.