Renny Harlin officially set to direct upcoming The Strangers sequel

Madelaine Petsch, Froy Gutierrez and Gabriel Basso have been tapped to star in a Lionsgate remake of the 2008 horror The Strangers, which has entered production in Slovakia.

Renny Harlin has officially be announced to be directing the film, which will be the first in a trilogy. News first broke of the upcoming remakes last month with Harlin being rumoured to be attached shortly after.

The new Strangers film will follow Petsch’s character as she drives cross-country with her longtime boyfriend (Gutierrez) to begin a new life in the Pacific Northwest. When their car breaks down in Venus, Oregon, they’re forced to spend the night in a secluded Airbnb, where they are terrorised from dusk till dawn by three masked strangers. Lionsgate plans from there to expanding the story in new and unexpected ways with its sequels.

Alan R. Cohen and Alan Freedland  wrote the franchise launcher, to be distributed worldwide by Lionsgate. Courtney Solomon is producing alongside Mark Canton, Christopher Milburn, Gary Raskin, Charlie Dombeck and Alastair Birlingham. Andrei Boncea, Dorothy Canton, and Roy Lee are exec producing, with Rafaella Biscayn, the Slovakia-based Frame Film SK, Johanna Harlin, Juan Garcia Peredo and Alberto Burgueno serving as co-producers.

“My mother instilled the love of movies in me through the world of Hitchcock and other masters of suspense and horror. My breakthrough to Hollywood happened with the success of A Nightmare on Elm Street 4,” noted Renny Harlin. “It is only fitting that I get to return to my favorite genre with the incredibly well written trilogy of The Strangers. The characters and the storyline are all grounded in reality and offer me an endless tapestry of haunting visuals in bringing these movies alive.”

“When setting out to remake The Strangers, we felt there was a bigger story to be told, which could be as powerful, chilling, and terrifying as the original and could really expand that world,” said Solomon. “Shooting this story as a trilogy allows us to create a hyperreal and terrifying character study. We’re fortunate to be joining forces with Madelaine Petsch, an amazing talent whose character is the driving force of this story.”

“When you’ve got two horror aficionados like Courtney Solomon and Renny Harlin coming together, you’ve got all you need to create some incredibly smart, lean-forward-in-your-seat, addictively thrilling entertainment,” remarked Mark Canton. “Fans of the original film will be blown away; new audiences will discover the intensely unnerving world of The Strangers.”

“The Strangers taps into such primal fears that it will always be relevant,” added Lionsgate’s EVP of Acquisitions & Co-Productions, Eda Kowan. “But what truly sets this project apart is the way the filmmakers have expanded the story and given these characters a new life.”

Bryan Bertino original was made on a budget of $9 million, the film became a sleeper hit, grossing $82 million at the box office worldwide.

The plot follows Kristen (Liv Tyler) and James (Scott Speedman) whose stay at a vacation home is disrupted by three masked criminals who infiltrate the home. The screenplay was inspired by two real-life events: the multiple-homicide Manson family Tate murders and a series of break-ins that occurred in Bertino’s neighbourhood as a child.

The Strangers: Prey at Night (also known as The Strangers II: Prey at Night) starring Bailee MadisonLewis PullmanChristina HendricksMartin Henderson, and Damian Maffei. It was written by Bertino (who wrote and directed the first film) and Ben Ketai.

A sequel to The Strangers (2008), the film follows a family vacationing to a secluded mobile home park, where they are attacked by three masked thugs – and grossed $32.1 million worldwide on a budget of $5 million.

Get your copy of The Strangers [Blu-ray] on Amazon now.

Get your copy of The Strangers: Prey at Night [Blu-ray] on Amazon now.

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