MGM Pictures is partnering with Monkeypaw’s Jordan Peele and Win Rosenfeld in order to produce a reboot of horror classic Candyman, adapted from Clive Barker’s short, The Forbidden.

Nia DaCosta is set to direct the film, from a screenplay by Peele and Rosenfeld. While there have been rumours swirling about this, the project was officially announced today by Jonathan Glickman, president of the MGM Motion Picture Group.

DaCosta’s crime drama Little Woods, starring Tessa Thompson and Lily James premiered at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival, and earned her the Nora Ephron Award.

The new Candyman is being called a “spiritual sequel” to the original. Returning to the neighbourhood where the legend began, in the now-gentrified part of Chicago, where the Cabrini-Green housing projects once stood. In the original, Tony Todd took on the role of Candyman/Daniel Robitaille, an urban legend who was summoned to kill when someone said his name five times facing a mirror.

Glickman said of the project, “We cannot wait for the world to see what the mind-blowing combination of Jordan, Win and Nia bring to the legend of Candyman. They have created a story that will not only pay reverence to Clive Barker’s haunting and brilliant source material but is also thoroughly modern and will bring in a whole new generation of fans.”

Peele added, “The original was a landmark film for black representation in the horror genre. Alongside Night of the Living Dead, Candyman was a major inspiration for me as filmmaker — and to have a bold new talent like Nia at the helm of this project is truly exciting. We are honored to bring the next chapter in the Candyman canon to life and eager to provide new audiences with an entry point to Clive Barker’s legend.”

Filming is set to begin this spring, ahead of a Universal Pictures release of Candyman on June 12th, 2020.

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