When Is 'Blair Witch' Set? Decades Have Past Since 'The Blair Witch Project' Both On & Off-Screen
It's hard to believe that its been 17 years since The Blair Witch Project was released in theaters, kickstarting a huge trend of found footage horror films and supernatural scares. But, what's even harder to believe is that the movie has yet to be given a real sequel. Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2 attempted to continue the series in 2000, but it wasn't a continuation of any of the characters from the original film, and it failed to enchant audiences in the same way. Now Blair Witch is coming out as a more direct sequel to The Blair Witch Project, continuing the original story of Heather Donahue and her friends who entered into the woods in Maryland, never to be heard from again. But, just because it's been 16 years since the film's release doesn't mean 16 years have passed in the movie world of the Blair Witch series, so, if you're wondering when Blair Witch is set, you should know it's not 16 years later.
In fact, according to Variety, Blair Witch actually takes place in 2014, 20 years after the events of The Blair Witch Project , which itself was set in 1994 — hence it's 1999 release as "found footage." For two decades, Heather and her friends have been missing, and Heather's brother, James, has been hoping to find her. James, the main protagonist of Blair Witch, is a twenty-something man who takes his filmmaker friend on an adventure to the Black Hills Forest, which would mean he was just a little kid when The Blair Witch Project took place.
Based on trailers, what has happened in the 20 years since the events depicted in The Blair Witch Project remains unknown. Has anyone else been lost to the Blair Witch in the Black Hills Forest? What about search parties? Has James himself seen the found footage of The Blair Witch Project? Fans of the series will just have to wait for Blair Witch to find out. In the meantime, what is known is that the mythology of the Blair Witch franchise will remain consistent, despite the 20-year gap. "We stayed true to as much of the lore as we could jam into this movie, we added a few little beats of our own," director Adam Wingard revealed in a Reddit AMA on Monday.
It's likely that, no matter how Blair Witch ends, the next movie in the series will take place much less than 20 years later. Fans and filmmakers are already anticipating Blair Witch to inspire growth in the franchise — "you bet there will be more," Wingard wrote on Reddit — and that's probably something we can expect sooner rather than later.