Hereditary and Jumanji Star Reportedly in Talks for M. Night Shyamalan's Latest Thriller

hereditary movie alex wolff a24
(Photo: A24)

Filmmaker M. Night Shyamalan's upcoming thriller might have had to delay its shoot due to the coronavirus pandemic, but a report from Collider claims that Hereditary and Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle star Alex Wolff is in talks to join the project. As is the nature of most Shyamalan films, details about the project and Wolff's potential role in the endeavor are being kept under wraps, though it was originally slated to land in theaters in February of 2021 and has been pulled off its release schedule entirely, as Universal Pictures is waiting for the pandemic to subside before reassessing its future releases.

The filmmaker's breakthrough project was 1999's The Sixth Sense, which went on to earn Oscar nominations, as it effectively blended dramatic themes into a supernatural thriller. Over the course of his career, the filmmaker has dabbled in a handful of other genres, such as sci-fi with After Earth and family-friendly action-adventure with The Last Airbender, but his successes with thrillers like The Visit and Split in recent years have reminded him how much passion he has for horrifying narratives.

“I’m loving this approach from The Visit on where they’re minimal, contained, I own them, we take big tonal risks and try to hit that note of absurd-but-grounded, that dark humor moment and deal with some complicated things and not necessarily take the audience where they’re comfortable, both during or even at the end," Shyamalan shared with Collider. "That’s all mitigated because we’re working with a respectable number and I feel like I’m being a good partner to my distributors. I like that because it allows me to iterate really fast in the making of these stories, so those films follow that architecture of approach and process. Even if it’s tricking myself into being more dangerous, it’s working because when I think about these three films that I’m thinking about—all weird and dark—I think that they speak to each other a little bit.”

During that conversation, he noted that he had three total ideas that he was excited about developing, but that two of them took prominence and earned February 2021 and February 2023 release dates. It's currently unknown if the 2023 film will also be delayed due to the pandemic.

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