After the DCEU, Shazam’s director returns to horror roots with a video game adaptation

 Shazam in Shazam Fury of the Gods.

For an extensive period spanning the last five years, director David F. Sandberg dedicated his creative talents to the DC Extended Universe, steering the Shazam! franchise. The inaugural entry hit theaters in 2019, with the sequel, Shazam! Fury of the Gods, following suit in 2023. However, as the DCEU concludes its chapter, Sandberg is set to return to his horror origins, embarking on an intriguing venture – a video game adaptation.

Before his foray into the superhero realm with Shazam!, Sandberg gained recognition as the director behind the successful horror films Lights Out and Annabelle: Creation. His proficiency in crafting spine-chilling narratives is now taking center stage once again, as revealed by The Hollywood Reporter. Sandberg has signed on to helm the movie adaptation of Until Dawn, a popular PlayStation game released in 2015. Joining forces with him is Gary Dauberman, renowned for his work on IT and his collaboration with Sandberg on Annabelle: Creation. Dauberman is tasked with revising Blair Butler’s original script for the Until Dawn adaptation.

For those unfamiliar with the Until Dawn game, it presents an interactive drama where eight adults must navigate through both realistic and supernatural threats while spending a night at the Blackwood Mountain lodge. Notable actors such as Rami Malek and Hayden Panettiere portrayed the leading characters, contributing to the game’s critical and commercial success. Additionally, Until Dawn spawned related projects, including the 2016 rail shooter spinoff Until Dawn: Rush of Blood and the 2018 first-person perspective prequel titled The Inpatient.

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While the movie adaptation is expected to faithfully capture the essence of the game, official plot details remain undisclosed. Screen Gems, collaborating with PlayStation Productions (both subsidiaries of Sony), describes Until Dawn as an “R-rated love letter to the horror genre,” featuring an ensemble cast. The involvement of original game actors like Malek and Panettiere in the film adaptation remains uncertain, and speculation suggests new actors may take on the roles.

Until Dawn represents another instance of the PlayStation brand expanding its influence in the film and TV landscape. Notably, Gran Turismo made its way into theaters last year, receiving positive critical acclaim. On the television front, adaptations of The Last of Us and Twisted Metal garnered favorable responses, with both slated for second seasons. As developments unfold for Until Dawn, enthusiasts can anticipate further updates on its progress, including its place in the lineup of upcoming horror movies. Meanwhile, exploring the cinematic landscape for 2024 offers a glimpse into the diverse range of films awaiting audiences this year.

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