Oren Peli's original "Paranormal Activity" had a tortured history getting to screens, having premiered at festivals in rough form two years before Paramount released the $15,000 indie to unprecedented success.
As for the nightmarish sequels, things have been a dream, with the studio churning them out annually to a highly appreciative (read: scared out of their wits) audience. With "Paranormal Activity 4" about to make people poop their pampers in theaters across the country, we're asking the inevitable question: Will there be a fivequel?
Although we haven't read the deal memo for Oren Peli's contract with Satan, we assume the dark lord demanded at least 40 or 50 sequels before the filmmaker's soul can be set free. Hence, we think "Paranormal Activity 5" is inevitable, but what do the filmmakers say?
"It's definitely too early to even start talking about 'Paranormal 5,'" producer Jason Blum told Dread Central. "I would say that it's hard to make a good movie that you're working on while thinking two movies past it so we don't really have an 'end game' right now. I think that thinking about what hasn't even happened yet can negatively effect the current movie you're working on, so we try not to think about the next one. Of course there will be times where we are shooting scenes where we think, 'Oh, that would be good for another one,' but there's not a solid plan right now for multiple movies beyond the one coming out soon. We have to see how it goes with this one first."
The filmmakers behind parts 3 and 4, "Catfish" helmers Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman, had an interview with Bleeding Cool which mysteriously got destroyed before it could be transcribed, but author Hannah Shaw-Williams confirmed that the directors would be happy to return for part 5. They also mentioned that they used real demonic symbols in the film, which may or may not lead to it or them being somehow cursed, but only time will tell on that front.
However, one thing that may throw a monkey wrench into those plans is their intention to adapt Edward Abbey's classic novel of environmentalist sabotage, "The Monkey Wrench Gang." If Paramount continues to bang out one-a-year in the "Saw"/Woody Allen tradition, we doubt the directing duo can juggle both projects, so one or the other will have to be given the heave-ho.
Adding fuel to the fire is site Best Movies Ever, who published an unsourced news piece at the end of August stating that Schulman and Joost would indeed be back for their third helping of found footage creepiness.
As for Katie Featherston, the star of the series, the demonic glue if you will, she's also pretty hazy about the potential for another follow-up and if her "Katie" will return to wreck more hell-bound havoc.
"Oh, I think there's plenty of ways for the stories to continue to grow," Featherston told Digital Spy. "I don't know if they'll continue to grow it and or what will end up happening but I look forward to finding out."
Lastly, our biggest proof of the overall "Paranormal" plan may be the fact that Fusible reported in October of last year that the following domain names had been registered:
Is that a confirmation of studio machinations, or possibly an overzealous "just in case?" Considering the cost-to-profit ratio of these films (the last one cost $5 million and grossed more than $200 million globally), it's in Paramount's best interest to whip out a handicam in some suburban house, get a PA to shake some bushes in the background, and easily offset the cost of converting "G.I. Joe 2" to 3-D.
In the meantime, though, sit back and enjoy Extra Butter, Please's "Abnormal Activity":