David Gordon Green Is Making a Direct Sequel to ‘The Exorcist’
The Exorcist has never lent itself to good sequels, but it’s not for lack of trying. In 1978, Warner Bros. released Exorcist II: The Heretic, which quickly garnered a reputation as one of the worst sequels ever made. 13 years later, they tried again with The Exorcist III, which flopped but at least became something of a cult film on home video. A decade and a half later, a prequel to The Exorcist became such a total disaster that there ended up being two different cuts of the film from two different directors. (For the record, they’re Paul Schrader’s Dominion: Prequel to the Exorcist and Renny Harlin’s Exorcist: The Beginning.) Both flopped. Neither was very good.
That brings us to the latest attempt to exorcise this franchise’s sequel demons. David Gordon Green, who’s already updated on classic horror franchise with Halloween, is at work on an Exorcist for the 2020s. And he told Total Film (via GamesRadar) that his Exorcist will be a sequel, rather than a remake or reboot. He said:
The Exorcist has been written. That was one of my pandemic projects. It’s not inaccurate [that it will be a sequel to the original film]. I like all the Exorcist movies. And not only do I like them, I think they can all fall into the acceptable mythology for what I’m doing. It’s not like I’m saying, ‘Pretend that The Exorcist 2 never happened.’ That’s fine to exist. They’re all fine to exist, and I enjoy all of them.
Green added that working on The Exorcist involves “a lot of research, rather than just impulsive screenwriting” because you have to do a “s—load of interviews” in order to get the “dramatic authenticity” that the franchise demands. “It’s a lot more than I anticipated getting into it,” Green admitted. Having seen Exorcist II: The Heretic, we’re guessing John Boorman didn’t do a s—load of interviews.