EJ Moreno looks ahead at the 2023 horror slate…
Looking back at 2022, it’s fair to say it was one of the best years for horror. Recently, the genre has been rising in mainstream popularity, and the arthouse crowd is getting fed. It’s abundant wealth, leading to 2022 alone having three or four genre-defining moments. Now, 2023 looks to keep the momentum with a roster of potential heavy hitters.
We’ll look at the line-up of 2023 horror films and offer up a preview of what’s to come. It will be a pretty twisted and delicious year for our favorite genre, from reboots to sequels and a few unexpected comebacks.
Let us know which of these you’re looking forward to the most, and share any overlooked upcoming horror movies…
Blumhouse often offers up the most horror content each year, whether it’s their big blockbusters or television series. They look to kick off 2023 with another one of their low-budget yet highly-marketed projects. M3GAN made a splash on social media with its bizarre trailer and gained word-of-mouth with its marketing campaign. Could we see another massive hit for the studio, or have they been stretching themselves too thin?
Killer dolls are still in-style with Chucky dominating on T.V., but the creepy A.I. spin on the story could throw off some viewers. Let’s see if M3GAN finds a family with Blumhouse’s loyal viewers.
Knock at the Cabin
M. Night Shyamalan is an unstoppable machine, still bringing horror to audiences almost yearly. Since his comeback with The Visit, we are seeing Shyamalan bring his wildest ideas to the screen, and it’s mostly paying off. He looks to offer up more chills with Knock at the Cabin, a new thriller coming in early 2023. The premise and cast make this one of his most must-see films of recent memory.
Shyamalan is already preparing for another film in 2024, so it seems he will be on this list again. Hopefully, praising Knock at the Cabin ahead of that.
When Radio Silence brought back Scream early in 2022, it delighted fans and critics alike. It was the type of slasher that reminds you why you love the genre and served as a great way to build towards the franchise’s future. We get a glimpse of that future with Scream 6. Little is known about the film’s story, but it’s seeing new and old faces returning and reportedly shifting the setting to New York City.
Ghostface will slash, and we’ll get meta humor with slick dialogue; you know what to expect from a sixth Scream, but that doesn’t make it any less anticipated. Let’s expect the unexpected here.
Chris McKay recently shifted from animation to live-action and now looks to enter the world of horror with his new film, Renfield. The Lego Batman and Tomorrow War director looks to reinvent the story of Dracula by focusing on his infamous sidekick, the titular Renfield. Starring the criminally underrated Nicholas Hoult, it will likely be a great horror comedy. Oh, did I forget to mention Nicolas Cage is Count Dracula!?
Yes, with a premise like this and a solid cast, expect Renfield to be the horror comedy surprise of the year.
Evil Dead Rise
Like the Deadites in the film, you can’t keep the Evil Dead franchise down. Every few years, we see a new twist on this iconic story, and we will see another fresh new take in 2023. Evil Dead Rise sees Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell produce a new generation of scares, with director Lee Cronin and actors Alyssa Sutherland & Lily Sullivan leading the way.
Much like Scream 6, Evil Dead Rise moves an iconic franchise to a new location and looks to shake things up. Will the city Deadites and new leads keep Evil Dead alive?
Insidious: Fear the Dark
As Insidious returns to the cinemas, we will witness the birth of Patrick Wilson as a director. Wilson steps into the director’s chair for the fifth installment, hopefully pushing the franchise in a new direction. Insidious: Fear the Dark will be a true sign to see if paranormal movies still have a place in the era of requels and prestige horror.
With the backing of horror titans Leigh Whannell, Jason Blum, and James Wan, it will be hard for this Insidious sequel to flop, but horror fans will be the judge of that.
Meg 2: The Trench
2018’s The Meg was a moderate box office success, bringing in over $540 million worldwide. For a shark movie, that’s impressive, and it shows there’s still some life to the long-running horror sub-genre. Meg 2: The Trench hopes they can still catch some fish with their massive shark movies, going for another splash summer release.
What helps Meg 2 is having stylish director Ben Wheatley stepping into the director’s chair. If anyone can make a shark movie feel needed, it’s the always impressive Wheatley and his sleek horror.
Horror can be for the whole family, and Haunted Mansion looks to bring that back to audiences. The upcoming Disney remake, based on the hit ride at the theme parks, will see a new family enter the spooky dwelling and see what hilarity ensues. A film like this always makes for a great introduction to the genre.
With Justin Simien directing his all-star cast (Rosario Dawson, LaKeith Stanfield, Owen Wilson, and more), Haunted Mansion will likely be one of Disney’s most surprising entries of the year.
The Nun 2
James Wan makes another appearance on the list, producing The Nun 2 with Michael Chaves stepping in as director. I’m sure you’ll see another ghost movie filled with jump scares and the usual brilliant horror performance from icon Bonnie Aarons. What else can you do with these?
The first Nun was a box office juggernaut, so it’s expected that Warner Bros Discovery will want to return to this franchise. It’s just hard to get excited for more of the same.
The team that brought you the recent Halloween films from Blumhouse look to bring back The Exorcist in a big way. For the 2023 version, directed by David Gordon Green, we see the return of Ellen Burstyn as Chris MacNeil. She’ll star alongside Leslie Odom Jr. as a man trying to help his possessed child.
This could be an epic return like 2018’s Halloween if done right. But if done wrong, The Exorcist 2023 can end up like Halloween Ends, and no one wants that.
The Saw franchise returns for entry number ten, and let’s see how they torture folks this time. Tobin Bell returning to make more Saw movies is as shocking as Ellen Burstyn returning for more Exorcist movies. Bell seemingly wrapped his time as Jigsaw years ago, but you can’t keep a good killer down.
With long-time Saw director Kevin Greutert and Tobin Bell returning, Saw X could feel oddly nostalgic for an era of horror we have forgotten.
SEE ALSO: The Best Horror Movies of 2022
What horror movies do you want to see most in 2023? Let us know on our social channels @FlickeringMyth…