Nia DaCosta, who helmed this year’s indie modern Western Little Woods, has been hired to direct what is being billed as a contemporary and “spiritual sequel” to the 1992 horror pic, which Peele is producing with his Monkeypaw Productions partner Win Rosenfeld.
MGM, which made the announcement Tuesday, is behind the project and is teaming with Universal to release it. The latter has set a June 12, 2020, bow for the thriller.
The original movie adapted the Clive Barker story The Forbidden and told of the legend of the Candyman, a murdered son of a slave who is now a supernatural killer, and his unique relationship with a white grad student working on a thesis on urban legends, all set against the backdrop of a poor Chicago housing project.
The new story is once again set in the Windy City neighborhood, but it is now gentrified.
Production is expected to begin in the spring.
“The original was a landmark film for black representation in the horror genre,” Peele said in a statement. “Alongside Night of the Living Dead, Candyman was a major inspiration for me as a filmmaker, and to have a bold new talent like Nia at the helm of this project is truly exciting. We are honored to bring the next chapter in the Candyman canon to life and eager to provide new audiences with an entry point to Clive Barker’s legend.”
Said MGM’s Jon Glickman, “We cannot wait for the world to see what the mind-blowing combination of Jordan, Win and Nia bring to the legend of Candyman. They have created a story that will not only pay reverence to Clive Barker’s haunting and brilliant source material but is also thoroughly modern and will bring in a whole new generation of fans.”
DaCosta’s Little Woods starred Tessa Thompson and Lily James and premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival, where it earned the filmmaker the Nora Ephron Award.