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Movies The 16 Most Anticipated Horror Movies of the Coming Year, From A Quiet Place 2 to Candyman

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Movies The 16 Most Anticipated Horror Movies of the Coming Year, From A Quiet Place 2 to Candyman

Scary movie junkies, rejoice! The year ahead is packed with fright fests that will have you peeking over your shoulder and checking to make sure all the doors are locked — as all good horror movies should. From modern adaptations of literary classics like Hansel and Gretel and The Turn of the Screw to new…

Movies The 16 Most Anticipated Horror Movies of the Coming Year, From A Quiet Place 2 to Candyman


Scary movie junkies, rejoice! The year ahead is packed with fright fests that will have you peeking over your shoulder and checking to make sure all the doors are locked — as all good horror movies should.

From modern adaptations of literary classics like Hansel and Gretel and The Turn of the Screw to new installments in fan-favorite horror franchises like The Grudge and Saw to some intriguing original tales, the slate of upcoming horror movies for the remainder of 2019 and throughout 2020 has something for every horror enthusiast.

Here are TIME’s most anticipated upcoming horror movies with release dates set over the course of the next year.

Movies The Lighthouse (Oct. 18, 2019)

Robert Eggers, whose 2015 horror tale The Witch earned widespread acclaim, is back with another atmospheric period piece that brings the terror of New England folklore eerily to life. The Lighthouse stars Robert Pattinson and Willem Dafoe as two lighthouse keepers, Dafoe the grizzled old-timer and Pattinson a newcomer with a questionable past, who begin to lose their minds while living on a remote island together in the 1890s. Critics have described the black-and-white thriller, which premiered to rave reviews at Cannes earlier in 2019, as a “perverse odd-couple tale,” “completely bonkers masterpiece” and “fetishistically authentic tale of grueling conditions, drunken meals by lone candlelight, and merciless physical labor.”

Movies Doctor Sleep (Nov. 8, 2019)

Like Stephen King’s 2013 sequel to his novel The Shining, Doctor Sleep follows a grown-up Danny Torrance (Ewan McGregor) as he returns to the Overlook Hotel, the site of his father’s descent into murderous madness. Torrance comes back in hopes of helping a little girl, who also possesses the “shine,” evade capture by a predatory cult whose members feed on the abilities of psychic children to remain immortal.

Although King has denounced Stanley Kubrick’s 1980 film adaptation of The Shining, Doctor Sleep director Mike Flanagan (Oculus, Gerald’s Game) has said his movie will acknowledge both versions of the story. (King is an executive producer for the new film.)

Movies Black Christmas (Dec. 12, 2019)

The reign of terror wrought by Blumhouse Productions (Get Out, Paranormal Activity) continues with a remake of the 1974 slasher flick Black Christmas that was first rebooted — and panned by critics — in 2006. With director Sophia Takal (Always Shine, Green) at the helm, this new take on the sorority girls vs. masked killer story has the potential to be a refreshingly subversive one.

Movies The Grudge (Jan. 3, 2020)

We know what you’re thinking: another Grudge movie? But with the help of an R-rating and horror up-and-comer Nicolas Pesce (The Eyes of My Mother, Piercing) behind the camera, the 2020 revival of director Takashi Shimizu’s 2003 Japanese horror film Ju-On may just turn out to be the franchise’s most disturbing entry yet.

“The movie’s way more f-cked up,” Pesce said when asked at New York Comic-Con earlier this month how his addition will be different from its predecessors, including Shimizu’s 2004 English-language remake starring Sarah Michelle Gellar. “Not that the wave of J-Horror in the early 2000s wasn’t f-cked up — but this is really f-cked up.”

Movies The Turning (Jan. 24, 2020)

The Turning, a modern take on Henry James’ classic 1898 novella The Turn of the Screw, stars Mackenzie Davis (Halt and Catch Fire, Terminator: Dark Fate) as Kate, a nanny who is hired to look after a young brother (Stranger Things’ Finn Wolfhard) and sister (The Florida Project‘s Brooklynn Prince) following the deaths of their parents. It doesn’t take long for Kate to realize that something isn’t right at the decaying Maine estate where the children live, but by that point, it seems the mansion’s otherworldly inhabitants have taken note of her as well.

Movies Gretel & Hansel (Jan. 31, 2020)

Starring IT franchise alum Sophia Lillis as Gretel and Silent Hill‘s Alice Krige as the child-eating witch, this twisted retelling of the classic Brothers Grimm story is rife with established horror talent. Journey into the dark wood alongside director Osgood Perkins (I Am the Pretty Thing That Lives in the House) for a flipped take on the Hansel and Gretel fairy tale in which Gretel takes the lead and there’s isn’t a gingerbread house in sight.

Movies Fantasy Island (Feb. 14, 2020)

Ricardo Montalban as Mr. Roarke and Herve Villechaize as Tattoo in ‘Return to Fantasy Island.’

ABC Photo Archives/Walt Disney Television—Getty Images

Let the Valentine’s Day horror fest begin. Based on the classic 1970s TV series, Fantasy Island will rely on the same basic premise as the show: People from all over the world travel to a mysterious island where guests can live out their wildest fantasies — for a price. Except this time, there will also be a killer on the loose. Michael Peña will star as the island’s enigmatic host Mr. Roarke, a role originated by Ricardo Montalban. But the Jeff Wadlow-directed (Truth or Dare) reboot reportedly won’t include Mr. Roarke’s sidekick Tattoo, the character made famous by Hervé Villechaize.

Movies The Invisible Man (Feb. 28, 2020)

The Invisible Man, lobbycard, from left: Claude Rains, Gloria Stuart, 1933.

LMPC—Getty Images

Following the failure of the Dark Universe, Universal will revive its monster movie franchise with a modern reimagining of H.G. Wells’ 1897 novel The Invisible Man. Leigh Whannel (Insidious: Chapter 3, Upgrade) is writing and directing the standalone sci-fi thriller, which will star Elisabeth Moss as Cecilia Kass, a young woman who begins to suspect that her recently deceased abusive ex (Oliver Jackson-Cohen) isn’t actually dead.

Movies A Quiet Place 2 (March 20, 2020)

In A Quiet Place, Emily Blunt and John Krasinski play parents facing an unthinkable horror

Paramount Pictures

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Writer-director John Krasinski is bringing his dystopian world of sound-hunting monsters back in A Quiet Place 2, a follow-up to the 2018 original that TIME’s critic Stephanie Zacharek dubbed one of the most “terrifyingly effective horror movies in years.” While details about the sequel’s plot are being kept under wraps, we know that Emily Blunt (Krasinski’s wife both on- and off-screen) will return as the shotgun-wielding, baby-birthing warrior Evelyn Abbott, alongside Millicent Simmonds as her daughter Regan and Noah Jupe as her son Marcus. Peaky Blinders‘ Cillian Murphy and Atlanta‘s Brian Tyree Henry have also signed on.

“I really think that what we’ll do is we’ll see more of that family continuing to survive and finding out that they’re not the only ones,” Henry told the Observer in June. “And I think that we’re also going to get a few answers to the origin of where and how this whole thing happened.”

Movies The New Mutants (April 3, 2020)

This long-delayed, horror-centric X-Men spin-off has undergone extensive reshoots — reportedly to at least somewhat better integrate it into the Marvel Cinematic Universe — since Disney acquired 21st Century Fox in March 2019. But its underlying storyline has seemingly stayed the same. The film, starring Maisie Williams, Anya Taylor-Joy and Antonio Banderas, centers on a group of young mutants who are being held against their will inside a secret facility that’s running horrific tests on them.

Movies Saw 9 (May 15, 2020)

What? You thought Jigsaw — and his numerous successors — were finally done trapping people in torture devices intended to teach them a lesson about the fragility of life? Think again. Based on a story created by Chris Rock, who will take the lead as a police detective “investigating a series of grisly crimes,” the forthcoming ninth installment in the Saw saga has been described as a “reimagining and a spinning-off of the franchise.” Samuel L. Jackson will play Rock’s father.

Josh Stolberg, who co-wrote the script with Pete Goldfinger, has confirmed on Twitter that the movie is not a sequel to their 2017 reboot Jigsaw, but that it does take place within the Saw series timeline. “I can say with pretty much certainty that our new film will NOT be called Jigsaw 2,” he wrote. “But I don’t make the decisions, so who knows. But it’s NOT a sequel to Jigsaw. It’s DEFINITELY in the timeline of ALL the films though.”

Movies Candyman (June 12, 2020)

Tony Todd holds onto Virginia Madsen in a scene from the film ‘Candyman’, 1992.

Archive Photos—Getty Images

Jordan Peele, the mastermind behind Get Out and Us, continues his foray into the world of horror with a “spiritual sequel” to Bernard Rose’s 1992 cult classic Candyman, which explores issues of race and class in America. The original movie stars Tony Todd as the titular hook-handed bogeyman, who, according to urban legend, is the undead son of a slave who has haunted Chicago’s Cabrini-Green housing project since being lynched for having a love affair with a white woman in the late 1800s.

“Candyman was a major inspiration for me as filmmaker,” Peele said in a November 2018 statement. “The original was a landmark film for black representation in the horror genre.”

This time around, Todd will return for some “applause-worthy moments” alongside Teyonah Parris, Nathan Stewart-Jarrett, Colman Domingo and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, who, despite reports to the contrary, director Nia DaCosta (Little Woods) says isn’t taking over Todd’s original role.

“I can’t say what’s happening in the film because we want it to be a surprise, but he’s not replacing Tony Todd,” DaCosta said in March. “That’s been reported, and I was just like, ‘I don’t know what to say about this. This is not right.’”

The reboot was co-written by Peele and Win Rosenfeld, whose joint production company, Monkeypaw Productions, is producing alongside MGM Pictures.

Movies The Purge 5 (July 10, 2020)

The Purge will commence in 5….4….3….2….1…..Prepare yourself for yet another government-sanctioned night of lawless violence in The Purge 5, the fifth installment in the horror franchise set in a near-future United States where any and all crime is legal for one 12-hour period per year.

It’s still unclear whether the Everado Gout-directed Purge 5 will be another prequel like 2018’s The First Purge, or explore the fallout from the election in 2016’s The Purge: Election Year.

Movies The Conjuring 3 (Sept. 11, 2020)

Vera Farmiga and Patrick Wilson in The Conjuring 2.

Warner Bros. Pictures

Married demonologists Ed and Lorraine Warren (played by Vera Farmiga and Patrick Wilson) will be investigating yet another case of (supposed) paranormal activity that their real-life counterparts took on in the 1970s.

This time, the focus will be on a man who used demonic possession as his defense for committing a murder. “It’s this guy who was on trial for committing a murder,” executive producer James Wan told Bloody Disgusting. “I think it’s the first time in America’s history where the defendant used possessions as a reason, as an excuse.”

Michael Chaves (The Curse of La Llorona) will direct from a screenplay by David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick (The Orphan, The Conjuring 2).

Movies Last Night in Soho (September 25th, 2020)

Not much is yet known about director Edgar Wright’s (Baby Driver, Shaun of the Dead) forthcoming psychological thriller except that it’s set in London and stars Anya Taylor-Joy, Thomasin McKenzie, Matt Smith, Michael Ajao, Synnøve Karlsen, Diana Rigg, Terence Stamp and Rita Tushingham.

“I realized I had never made a film about central London — specifically Soho, somewhere I’ve spent a huge amount of time in the last 25 years,” Wright told Empire of the movie. “With Hot Fuzz and Shaun of the Dead, you make movies about places you’ve lived in. This movie is about the London I’ve existed in.”

Movies Halloween Kills (Oct. 16, 2020)

Despite the fact that we last left Michael Myers trapped inside the basement of a burning house, the seemingly unkillable masked killer will be back to once again terrorize Jamie Lee Curtis’ Laurie Strode and her family in a sequel to the supremely successful 2018 franchise reboot, Halloween. And considering there’s already a third movie titled Halloween Ends in the works for 2021 — the 12th installment in the saga as a whole — it seems safe to say that Michael will survive whatever’s thrown at him this time as well.

Halloween director David Gordon Green is returning to direct both sequels, which will feature appearances by characters from John Carpenter’s original 1978 classic including Kyle Richards’ Lindsey Wallace.

Write to Megan McCluskey at

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