The Exorcist: Ellen Burstyn Reveals Huge Pay Day for Sequel Return

When it comes to horror franchises, there are many stars who have returned to their roles throughout the years such as Jamie Lee Curtis in Halloween, but some actors prefer the "one and done" approach. Back in 1973, The Exorcist starred Linda Blair as Regan MacNeil, Max von Sydow as Father Lankester Merrin, and Ellen Burstyn as Chris MacNeil. While Blair and von Sydow returned in 1977 for Exorcist II: The Heretic, Burstyn chose not to come back. There have been many films since the original, and Burstyn is finally returning after all these years now that The Exorcist is getting a legacy sequel from Halloween reboot trilogy director David Gordon Green. During a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Burstyn spoke about the payday that helped get her back.

"You know, what happened was I've turned down many versions of The Exorcist 2. I've said no every time," Burstyn explained. "This time they offered me a whole bunch of money and I still said no. And then they surprised me and they came back and said, 'We doubled the offer.' I said, 'OK, let me think about this.' I thought, 'That's a lot of money. Let me think about it.' The next thought that came to mind was: 'I feel like the devil is asking my price.' And the next thought that came to mind was, 'My price is a scholarship program for talented students at our master's degree program at Pace University. That's my price.' So I then went back and upped their up and ended up getting what I want. And I've got a scholarship program for young actors."

Burstyn added, "And I've shot most of the picture. The writer-director, David Gordon Green, I like very much. I met with him and we talked about the script and so forth and I promised him four more days if he needed them. And he's edited the film and he wants the four days, so I'm going back in November to shoot four more days. And it'll come out in [2023] on the 50th anniversary of The Exorcist, the original."

Leslie Odem Jr. (Hamilton, One Night in Miami) is also set to star in the new film, playing the father of a possessed child, who turns to Chris MacNeil for help, as MacNeil's daughter had to fight off a demonic presence in the original film. Blair has previously confirmed she's not involved in the new movie.

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The Exorcist franchise will return with a new movie on October 13th, 2023.