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Spider-Man: No Way Home's Jon Watts to cheat death with 'Final Destination' revival at HBO Max
The Grim Reaper will once again harvest the souls of those (un)lucky enough to cheat death.
After a decade of deadly dormancy, the Grim Reaper will once again harvest the souls of those (un)lucky enough to cheat death in a sixth installment of the Final Destination film franchise. According to Variety, which first broke the news, New Line Cinema plans to revamp the property with Spider-Man director Jon Watts, who is on board as a producer alongside his wife and usual producing partner, Dianne McGunigle (Atlanta), and longtime franchise vets, Craig Perry and Sheila Hanahan Taylor. Perry's been involved since the very beginning, while Hanahan Taylor joined the lethal party for 2003's Final Destination 2.
Lori Evans Taylor (Wicked Wicked Games) and Guy Busick (a co-writer on Paramount's forthcoming Scream movie) have been tapped to pen the screenplay, with the finished film slated to skip theaters for an exclusive streaming premiere on HBO Max. A director has yet to be chosen. Fresh off the critical and financial success of No Way Home, Watts is a tad busy to sit in the director's chair, given that he's about to introduce the Fantastic Four into the Marvel Cinematic Universe next.
“Both Dianne and I have been massive fans of Final Destination from the very beginning,” he said in a statement published by Variety. “So to be able to have a hand in crafting a new story with the original team and New Line is going to be both fun and exciting.”
“Jon and Dianne’s passion for the series is only matched by how much fun they are to work with,” added Perry. “Sheila and I couldn’t be more excited to have their creative energy driving this latest installment in the Final Destination franchise with New Line. With Guy and Lori’s inspired execution of Jon’s original idea, we have a movie that audiences are gonna love.”
The Final Destination series first kicked off in 2000 with co-writer James Wong at the helm (he and the late David R. Ellis would hand off directorial duties for the next three sequels). Each film follows a group of individuals who narrowly avoid horrific ends when one of them has a sudden vision of the future. They get to safety just before the vision comes true, but none of them are in the clear because Death starts to pick them off one-by-one, subjecting each person to elaborate and gruesome Rube Goldberg-esque demises.
Final Destination 5 (directed by Steven Quale) was released in 2011 and brought the IP's collective box office gross to just over $657 million worldwide.
The sixth installment (there is no official title yet and it's unclear whether this is a reboot or direct continuation of previous entries) is the latest project clearly meant to enhance the value of HBO Max in a market saturated with subscription streaming options. WarnerMedia is currently in the midst of creating several streaming exclusives like a solo Batgirl movie starring Leslie Grace and Michael Keaton.