Poltergeist Remake Scares Up Monster House's Gil Kenan To Direct

Do you guys remember the one horror movie that came out a while back that, while it wasn’t perfect, did well at the box office, gave critics something nice to say about horror for a change, and never got the substandard remake treatment? No? That’s because it is a figment of someone’s imagination, or at least a reboot of a figment or someone else’s imagination.

The Poltergeist remake that everyone has long-expected but has never been asked for has made actual progress today, as Deadline reports MGM has reached through the TV screen to sign Gil Kenan on as director. While his last film, 2008’s fantasy adventure City of Embers isn’t so relevant, his debut feature was Sony Animation’s CGI children’s comedy Monster House in 2006, so at least he isn’t completely unfamiliar with scary things. He also has the oddball love story A Giant in the pipeline.

Though the story doesn’t say it, it’s assumed Kenan will be working from the script with a revolving door of contributing writers, including David Lindsay-Abaire, Paul Harris Boardman, Scott Derrickson, Juliet Snowden and Stiles White. All that, and not a Spielberg in the lot of them. In fact, the last thing anyone had heard about this project debunked a rumor that one of the film’s producers, Sam Raimi, was taking the directing job.

The Spielberg-produced original was certainly one of the films that heavily inspired the incessant number of Paranormal Activity films, and all the similar titles that came before and since. There’s a strange twinge of irony in Kenan, best known for more kid-appropriate fare, remaking a very adult film that was probably the most family-friendly film ever made by the original director Tobe Hooper, the man responsible for creating Leatherface and the Texas Chainsaw Massacre franchise.

Nick Venable
Assistant Managing Editor

Nick is a Cajun Country native and an Assistant Managing Editor with a focus on TV and features. His humble origin story with CinemaBlend began all the way back in the pre-streaming era, circa 2009, as a freelancing DVD reviewer and TV recapper.  Nick leapfrogged over to the small screen to cover more and more television news and interviews, eventually taking over the section for the current era and covering topics like Yellowstone, The Walking Dead and horror. Born in Louisiana and currently living in Texas — Who Dat Nation over America’s Team all day, all night — Nick spent several years in the hospitality industry, and also worked as a 911 operator. If you ever happened to hear his music or read his comics/short stories, you have his sympathy.