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With a level of irony they've hopefully noticed, the heads at Universal Pictures have decided to resurrect their once-dead adaptation of the board game Ouija. This is, of course, the same Universal that returned the film rights to Hasbro back in August, along with a $5-million penalty payment for failing to deliver a feature.
It seems a major reworking of the project rekindled the studio's interest. Instead of the $100-million blockbuster written by Adam Horowitz and Edward Kitsis (Tron: Legacy) with McG possibly directing, the new version of Ouija will be made for $5 million. Hasbro cracked the implausibility of a Battleship adaptation by throwing money at the problem (read: CG aliens), but for the sleepover/parlor favourite Ouija, it seems they’re going in the opposite direction, though with some new talent in the form of Jason Blum.
The slashed budget and addition of producer Blum all but give away the film’s new direction. Blumhouse Productions made a name for itself bringing the first three (and likely more) Paranormal Activity films to theatres, turning a shoestring budget into huge financial success. A horror flick featuring unknowns discovering the supernatural powers of the lettered Ouija board seems all but a certainty, though The Hollywood Reporter claims that the film being shot as found footage is unlikely.
And just to let you know they’re serious this time, multiple sources are claiming that Universal has set a 2013 release date for the film. No word on if the studio will use any of Fright Night writer Marti Noxon’s rewrite assigned back in November. We’ll have to wait to see just how faithful the reborn project is to the source material. Personally, I’m planning a boycott if fan-favorite characters G and T get cut.