Airing from 1977 to 1984, the original Fantasy Island TV series was one of the weirder dramas on the airwaves, but for the most part it steered away from scary territory. However, with Blumhouse Productions tackling the Fantasy Island movie, it was expected that the cinematic adaptation would be infused with horror, and sure enough, the first Fantasy Island trailer promises that this version of the mysterious location is significantly more frightening.
The basic premise of the cinematic Fantasy Island initially seems to the same as the one from the original TV show. Guests from all over the world are flown out to Fantasy Island to have their secret dreams come true. And just like in the series, this tropical resort is run by the enigmatic Mr. Rourke, played in the movie by Ant-Man and the Wasp’s Michael Peña, though rather than being aided by Tattoo, his assistant is a yet-to-be-named woman played by Parisa Fitz-Henley… though I suppose she could also be named Tattoo.
Regardless, soon enough, guests like Lucy Hale’s Melanie discover that this guarantee of anything and everything being possible (aside from cell phone service) has sinister ramifications. For instance, Melanie talks about how her fantasy is to get revenge on a childhood bully, and upon taking the elevator to the “floor with no name,” she discovers the woman who tormented her in adolescence tied up and being tortured.
This is just one twisted example of how Blumhouse’s Fantasy Island will screw around with its visitors, with the main cast also including Maggie Q, Portia Doubleday, Jimmy O. Yang, Ryan Hansen, Michael Rooker, Charlotte McKinney and Austin Stowell. In addition to directing, Jeff Wadlow, whose credits include Kick-Ass 2 and Truth or Dare, co-wrote the script with Jillian Jacobs and Chris Roach.
Just like the original Fantasy Island, the big screen version will also be infused with supernatural elements, such as how Maggie Q’s character sees a young girl she knows alive and well again, presumably her daughter. However, it remains to be seen just how much of this movie will lean on the supernatural vs. scares being delivered in a more realistic way.
Of course, in the end, most, if not all of guests will realize that Fantasy Island has taken their fantasies too far (which Maggie Q’s character believes is for “something else,” i.e. a grander purpose), and they’ll try to escape by any means necessary. But as Mr. Rourke says, people die here, so one can logically assume that not everyone will make if off the island alive.
Fantasy Island opens in theaters on February 14, 2020. Don’t forget to look through our 2020 release schedule to learn what other movies are coming out next year.