There comes a time in most franchises that the same story is being told time and time again. Some movies have managed to do this for a fair length of time, such as Saw, while others have done it for decades, like Friday The 13th and Halloween. Arriving in the 2000s, Paranormal Activity revitalized the "found footage" horror genre that was previously given a kick by The Blair Witch Project in the 1990s, but after 6 movies in the series, which were all interconnected in a looser way with each addition, the upcoming Paranormal Activity 7 will be the first complete reboot of the premise, and according to Jason Blum the movie has already been shot.
While promoting The Forever Purge, Blum spoke to Collider's Haleigh Foutch about the latest addition to the Paranormal Activity franchise and confirmed, "The movie's done. Yeah, we did it." While it may be a surprise to some, those who have been following the production's timeline since it was announced back in February probably won't be quite as shocked, however there have been some changes that may still be unexpected - such as the premiere date being moved from an expected March 2022 release to sometime before the end of this year on Paramount+'s streaming service, news which was revealed recently by ViacomCBS CEO Bob Bakish.
The plot of the new movie is being kept quiet at the moment, but Jason Blum was happy to talk a little about taking the franchise in another direction. The new film is written by Christopher Landon, who wrote Paranormal Activity 2 through to The Marked Ones, but while that may seem like the best way to simply rehash what has already gone before, Blum was adamant that they would only make the new movie if they were going to freshen it up.
"Paramount wanted to continue Paranormal Activity, I probably would have left it alone," Blum said. "So they wanted to continue it, but I thought if they were gonna continue it, you gotta - it was tired, there was no way to continue the road that we'd been down. So I really encouraged all the creative people involved to think of something new. A lot of people who are going to go see the new Paranormal Activity were 3 years old when the first Paranormal Activity came out, so they don't even know from those older movies. I thought if you were going to re-do it, you better really re-do it, not try and expand what we did all those years ago."
It does seem like that explanation translates into "How to make a new film but cash in on a franchise name" at its best - or maybe that should be worst - because let's face it, if it looks like a Paranormal Activity film, and is made like a Paranormal Activity film, then it is really just going to be another rehash of the same kind of story over again. If they write something that is new, fresh and not a repeat of previous Paranormal movies, then is it really a Paranormal Activity movie at all? Either way, like many before it, there is nothing going to stop a little more being wrung from the franchise as long as audiences are going to watch, and with the likes of The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It and A Quiet Place Part II having recently made big money in post-pandemic terms, perhaps there is an audience out there for more Paranormal Activity after all.