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Watch what happens when M. Night Shyamalan takes over 'The Late Show'

The director of Signs and Knock at the Cabin puts his thriller spin on a late night talk show.

By Matthew Jackson
M. Night Shyamalan on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert

M. Night Shyamalan has done a lot in his career. He's made hit films like The Sixth SenseSigns, Split, and more. He's doing television with Wayward Pines and Servant. He even co-wrote the Stuart Little movie (seriously, look it up). But one thing Shyamalan has never tried before is directing an episode of a late night talk show...until now. 

Back in 2021, The Late Show host Stephen Colbert invited Zack Snyder to "guest direct" an episode of the long-running late-night staple, complete with zombies, slow-motion action shots, and more. This week, in the lead-up to the premiere of the final season of Servant, it was Shyamalan's turn, and he came ready to give the full twist-laden thriller treatment to the Ed Sullivan Theater. 

Retitling the show Late for the duration of his episode, Shyamalan then took us behind-the-scenes in a special featurette which broke down his approach to retooling the series with a dose of "Shyamalanization" (it's a real word, he promises). So, what's his secret? First thing's first: Make Colbert draw out his own introduction, because you don't want the audience to know this mysterious character's name right away, after all. 

RELATED: M. Night Shyamalan partners with Canon for 'Knock at the Cabin' VR experience at CES 2023

Then came all the other little touches of Shyamalan scattered throughout the filmmaking process, from throwing in an alien in the background for a quick jump scare to mustering up a major cameo to, of course, a last-minute twist ending.

You can check it out in the clip below:

As with the "Snyder Cut" version of The Late Show, the latest guest director showed up remarkably game to play with the comedy of it all, and it's a lot of fun to see Shyamalan play a more egotistical, demanding version of himself who boils down his own filmmaking to a few choice tropes. 

Outside of The Late Show, Shyamalan's been very busy. Servant premieres its final season on Apple TV+ today, and his next feature film, Knock at the Cabin, based on Paul Tremblay's novel The Cabin at the End of the World, hits theaters Feb. 3.

In the mood for more high-concept horror? Jordan Peele's Nope is now streaming on Peacock.