In an entirely unexpected move Lionsgate has announced that director Adam Wingard’s upcoming The Woods is actually a direct sequel to 1999’s breakaway horror hit The Blair Witch Project. The revelation was unearthed during the film’s screening at San Diego Comic Con, where fans walked into the theater assuming to see another run-of-the-mill found footage horror flick, only to be surprised when the opening credits revealed the film’s real title: Blair Witch.
Blair Witch is said to pick up a few years after the events of the first film when one of its characters uncovers footage that shows his sister Heather Donahue, the lead focus of the original film. In search for answers the group enters into the Black Hills Forest in Burkittsville, Maryland where three filmmakers disappeared 20 years ago. They quickly realize that the Blair Witch legend is all too real as they are visited by a malicious evil presence.
Lionsgate is hoping that the new film will reboot the popular franchise that faltered with 2000’s prequel Book of Shadows. The unexpected project marks a fantastic marking ploy that worked out well for Paramount’s10 Cloverfield Lane earlier this year. The trailer, which was just released by the studio, is dark and boasts a strong blend of the original film with that of Neil Marshall’s 2005 The Descent.
Reception after the Conic Con screening was upbeat and positive with many fans claiming that Wingard has returned the franchise to its roots. We’ll all get a chance to critique the sequel when it hits theaters on September 16th.