William Brent Bell is bringing his horror background to bear on the highly anticipated Orphan: First Kill, an intriguing prequel to the original 2009 psychological thriller.
Bell–who has directed such genre films as Stay Alive (2006), The Devil Inside (2012) and The Boy (2016)–recently spoke about the prequel, as reported by comicbook.com, and provided some insight into his approach to the film.
In this prequel, Isabelle Fuhrman reprises her role as Esther–a seeming nine-year-old girl who in reality is an adult with primordial dwarfism who uses families for her own gain. And that casting begs the question: How to make the now-adult Fuhrman look like a young child?
Bell’s solution? “It’s all old-school techniques,” he said, “forced perspective, camera angles. We used CGI to help us…but not to create her at all.”
The director added that he wanted to be “respectful to the audience who loves the first film. And to have (the character) be Isabelle again, it’s so cool.”
Bell also let fans know this prequel will be a true horror film. “The movie has a childlike quality in some ways,” he said, “but it’s also extremely violent, because she’s a violent psychopath. (The movie) has a really big heart for her, but it also has a super dark side.”
The film–directed by Bell from a screenplay by David Coggeshall (Scream: The TV Series)–explores the backstory of Leena Klammer, who escapes from an Estonian psychiatric facility and travels to America by impersonating the daughter of a wealthy family. But Leena–in her new “Esther” identity–runs across a mother “who will protect her family at any cost.”
First Kill–which also stars Julia Stiles and Rossif Sutherland–does not yet have a release date, but Bell confirmed that the filmmakers are “right in the final stages of finishing the movie.”
The original Orphan–directed by Jaume Collet-Serra and written by David Leslie Johnson–starred Vera Farmiga and Peter Sarsgaard along with Fuhrman. The film–which received mixed reviews–grossed $79 million worldwide on a $20-million budget.
Keep reading Horror News Network for further details and a release date for Orphan: First Kill.