Prepare to get a chill months before Halloween in 2019. CBS Films has scheduled ‘Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark’ for release on August 9, 2019. Though this release date is locked in, don’t be surprised if it ends up getting moved. More on that later.
Guillermo del Toro co-wrote the screenplay and is producing this movie based on the frightening (and controversial) children’s books by Alvin Schwartz, with illustrations by Stephen Gammell. André Øvredal (‘Trollhunter’) directed the film, which is currently in post-production. del Toro co-wrote the script with Daniel Hageman & Kevin Hageman.
The original books were collections of different stories, but the film follows one narrative:
Inspired by one of the most terrifying children’s book series of all time, SCARY STORIES TO TELL IN THE DARK follows a group of young teens who must solve the mystery surrounding sudden and macabre deaths in their small town.
These teens will be played by Zoe Margaret Colletti (‘Annie’), Michael Garza (‘Wayward Pines’), Austin Abrams (‘The Walking Dead’), Natalie Ganzhorn (‘The Stanley Dynamic’), Gabriel Rush (‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’), and Austin Zajur (‘Kidding’). ‘Breaking Bad”s Dean Norris and ‘Orange is the New Black”s Lorraine Toussaint are also among the cast.
del Toro is a huge fan of the books, which have been engulfed in controversy since they first began publication in 1981, due to the violence included in the tales, intensified by the nightmarish illustrations by Gammell. In fact, del Toro owns ten pieces of Gammell’s original artwork. In 2011, Harper Collins released 30th-anniversary editions of the books with new artwork by Brett Helquist (‘A Series of Unfortunate Events‘) but fans of the originals rejected these tamer versions.
Interestingly, this August 9, 2019, release date is the same as that for Disney’s adaptation of ‘Artemis Fowl’, another live-action adaptation of a best-selling children’s/YA book series, written by Eoin Colfer. This film was directed by Kenneth Branagh and written by Conor McPherson. ‘Artemis Fowl’ stars Ferdia Shaw, Lara McDonnell, Tamara Smart, Nonzo Anozie, with Josh Gad, and Judi Dench. The first trailer was recently released.
It is possible that once the studios realize that two YA films are due to open on the same weekend that one of them might be shifted to another date. And Disney doesn’t flinch, so most likely it’s ‘Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark’ that will move.
Are you excited to see these frightening tales brought to the big screen?