Ready for the horror movie switcheroo of the year? According to Entertainment Weekly, the Blair Witch Project sequel you've been waiting 16 years for is actually happening — and you never even noticed, because until now, you've probably been calling it The Woods. That's right: Turns out the upcoming Lionsgate movie The Woods is actually a sequel to the most terrifying found-footage horror flick ever made. And not only that, but now that the horror movie's origins are no longer a mystery, it has a brand new name: Blair Witch . Guys, it truly is the late '90s again: First, Pokemon is a thing once more, and now the Blair Witch is back.
Luckily, based off the new trailer that debuted at San Diego Comic-Con on July 22 (where it was shown at the event billed as a screening for the film The Woods), the sequel is going to be a pretty great opportunity for the franchise to return to its glory days. After all, the trailer shows the return of all the things that made the movie so great in the first place: found footage, jumpy pacing, nervous 20-somethings in the middle of nowhere.
Upon the big reveal, Entertainment Weekly reports director Adam Wingard said the following:
The Woods was our working title. When we signed on to it, we knew that [the name] was eventually going to be changed. To us, it wasn’t even going to be part of the marketing. But I think Lionsgate made a really smart decision, using that.
And what a smart move. It would easy to be cynical about a Blair Witch sequel in a year in which it often feels like studios are short on original ideas, with Den of Geek reporting that 165 sequels are currently in the works as of July 2016. But, as Wingard commented, this very form of sly marketing recalls the marketing for the original movie, which partly did so well since it was sold to audiences as being footage from real student-filmmakers who just happened to have stumbled into a wood where some seriously weird sh*t was going down. Plus, after the success 10 Cloverfield Lane received after it was surprise announced as a sequel to Cloverfield just two months before its release date, it was definitely a tried and true method of marketing.
So yes, color me painfully overexcited at this news. Blair Witch with a 2016 twist? It feels like 1999 again and I love it.