‘Paranormal Activity’ Is Being Turned Into a Stage Play
When most people think of stage plays, they don’t necessarily think of horrifying experiences. Maybe a Paranormal Activity adaptation could change that.
Granted, it might seem like a really odd choice at first. How is a jump-scare-heavy found-footage horror movie going to work live in a theater? How do those special effects even work without cinematic special effects?
These are all valid questions, and likely something the director will have to contend with. Clearly, though, someone thinks it can work, because theatrical producer Simon Friend has acquired the rights to do a Paranormal Activity play and is planning a show for London’s West End.
Actually, there is something that makes Paranormal Activity perfectly suited to the stage. The internal dynamics of the character relationships. Frequently, horror movies use the things that go bump in the night as a way to play out trauma and psychological complexes in a safe (albeit spooky) environment. That aspect of horror is perfect for a stage play with grounded characters, living and breathing in the room with you. The spectacle of doors flying open by themselves doesn't hurt either.
At this point, there are seven films in the Paranormal Activity franchise. While the first was groundbreaking for its low-budget ingenuity, and is still one of the most profitable movies of all time, there are many more plot threads to pull from throughout the series. Friend recently adapted the film (and novel) Life of Pi, while Levi Holloway will be writing the adaptation. Friend has three Tonys, while Holloway has been working in the Chicago theater scene for years, including at the prestigious Steppenwolf Theatre.