It might not be Oscar bait, but last year's found footage thriller "Paranormal Activity" remains an unparalleled achievement. The low-budget indie which first screened for festival audiences in 2007 finally got a wide release in the fall of 2009. The wide opening came after Paramount's weeks-long campaign appealing for fans to "Demand It" by signing onto a website and clicking their home city. The end result: a record-breaking success story, which saw the film take in a 434,000 percent return on its initial investment of $15,000, making it the most profitable movie of all time.
As you might expect, there will be a sequel. Of course there will be. "Paranormal Activity 2" has been the subject of some discussion in recent months. Original director Oren Peli will not return. "Saw VI" director Kevin Greutert was at one point set to do it, but he was ultimately shuffled back to work on "Saw VII" instead. Now there are three other names in contention for the gig, including -- oddly -- none other than Brian De Palma.
The Los Angeles Times reports that three directors are currently being considered by Paramount, and that De Palma is among them. If you don't know that name, then it's time to turn in your movie lover ID card. Let's play the name-check game. "Scarface." "Carrie." "The Untouchables." "Dressed to Kill." "The Bonfire of the Vanities." "Carlito's Way." "Mission: Impossible." You get it? Pretty serious.
Also in consideration are Brad Anderson and Greg McLean. Anderson has a considerable amount of experience, having directed indie favorites "Transsiberian" and "The Machinist" as well as episodes of "The Wire" and "Fringe." McLean most recently wrote and directed the crocodile horror flick "Rogue," which features "The Crazies" star Radha Mitchell and "Avatar" star Sam Worthington. Things are even weirder than that: at one point, Akiva Goldsman, the Oscar-winning writer of "A Beautiful Mind," was in the running for the gig as well.
Since the movie is already announced for an October 22 release, I expect we'll be hearing some movement on this very soon. It seems clear that the aim is to shoot a little bigger than the original's micro-budget if the director prospects are any indication. We've reached out to Paramount for comment, so stay tuned for more.
Which of these directors would you like to see land the job? What would a Brian De Palma directed "Paranormal Activity" sequel look like? Should there be a cross-dressing Michael Caine cameo?