‘Orphan’ Prequel Moves Forward, Confirms Returning Lead Actress

by Thomas Tuna

A prequel to 2009’s psychological horror film Orphan is gaining momentum–as the cast fleshes out with the return of the lead actress and another key addition.

Isabelle Fuhrman–whose horror resume includes a role in the upcoming Escape Room 2–will reprise her role as Esther in Orphan: First Kill, as reported by Deadline. Fuhrman also will serve as an associate producer on the project.

It also was announced that Julia Stiles has signed on in an as-yet-undefined role in the prequel. Stiles boasts an impressive genre pedigree, having starred in the 2006 remake of The Omen and having earned an Emmy Award nomination for her part in the TV series Dexter.

The original Orphan–for those fans who didn’t catch the film 11 years ago–told the story of two parents who adopt nine-year-old Esther, who demonstrates strange behavior which leads to the revelation that she isn’t really a child–but an adult with primordial dwarfism who uses families for her own benefit.

Orphan–directed by Jaume Collet-Serra from a screenplay by David Leslie Johnson–starred Vera Farmiga and Peter Sarsgaard along with Fuhrman. The film was not a critical or box office success, grossing $79 million worldwide on a $20-million budget.

The prequel–originally titled Esther–explores the backstory of Leena Klammer, “who orchestrates a brilliant escape from an Estonian psychiatric facility and travels to America by impersonating the missing daughter of a wealthy family.” But Leena–in her new “Esther” identity–runs into an unexpected problem when she is pitted against a mother “who will protect her family at any cost.”

Orphan: First Kill–from Entertainment One and Dark Castle Entertainment–is directed by William Brent Bell (The Boy franchise and The Devil Inside) and written by David Coggeshall (Scream: The TV Series and Lure). Alex Mace, Hal Sadoff, Ethan Erwin and James Tomlinson are producing the film.

Keep reading Horror News Network for further updates on Orphan: First Kill.

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