After almost every other 1980s horror movie has been remade for the big screen, the time has finally come for the classic supernatural thriller The Changeling. Deadline reports that Finnish director Anders Engström has been tapped to helm a remake of the feature film with original producer Joel B. Michaels producing once again. Screenwriter Tab Murphy, known for animated Disney films like Atlantis: The Lost Empire, Tarzan, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, has penned the script for the updated version. The remake will reportedly "follow a musician who, after the death of his young daughter, returns to his childhood home. After a series of terrifying events, he begins to unlock the mystery of the dead child that haunts his home along with a terrible family secret."
"I am overjoyed at having the unique opportunity to reimagine an updated version of the iconic film The Changeling that I produced so many years ago," Michaels said in a statement. "It's flattering to know that it proved to have inspired a rash of filmmakers that paid homage to the original film. I am excited to be working with Anders Engström who will bring his own contemporary vision to the film."
The original version of the film starred Academy Award winner George C. Scott and was a critical hit upon its release. Critic Richard Grenier of Cosmopolitan called it "the best horror film of the year" upon its release (perhaps controversial since it was released in the same year as The Shining, Friday the 13th, and The Fog). It would go on to win the first ever Genie Award for Best Canadian Film, the Candian equivalent of the Oscar, and would win seven more including Best Foreign Actor for George C. Scott, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Cinematography.
Though not as well known as films like The Exorcist or The Shining, The Changeling still has a major following in horror circles. A previous version of the "100 Scariest Movie Moments" list program on Bravo picked a sequence from The Changeling as the #54 scariest moment, beating out films like Candyman, The Evil Dead, and The Sixth Sense.
The film marked one of George C. Scott's first forays into the horror genre, something he would continue to dabble in in the years after. After appearing in The Changeling, Scott starred in the Stephen King adaptation Firestarter, a version of Edgar Allen Poe's The Murders in the Rue Morgue, and most famously, The Exorcist III.