New Blumhouse Horror Movie Starting A Franchise?

Blumhouse is planning on making M3GAN into a horror franchise.

By Chad Langen | Updated


James Wan and Jason Blum have pretty much mastered the craft of developing low-budget horror pictures that turn huge profits. The two genre producers, who are currently in talks to merge their respective production companies, teamed up for the forthcoming killer doll feature M3GAN. And according to MovieWeb, the pair revealed in an interview that they’re hopeful the flick will launch a new franchise. The film is scheduled to open in theaters on January 6, and it will serve as the first major horror title of 2023.

With the release of M3GAN just a couple of weeks out, Wan and Blum have been making press rounds to promote the film. The duo recently spoke with Screen Rant, where they shared their excitement for the upcoming horror movie. When asked whether there’s potential for the flick to spawn future installments, both producers seemed optimistic.

“I hope so,” said Blum. “I mean, we don’t want to put the cart before the horse. But if a lot of people love the movie, I hope we can make more of them.”

The Blumhouse CEO hasn’t been shy in sharing his enthusiasm for M3GAN. Back in October, he took to social media to post a photo of himself dressed as the titular character of the forthcoming horror picture. To say his costume was completely bizarre is an understatement, but the internet definitely got a kick out of his Halloween get-up.

Still, the killer doll scene is looking a bit crowded these days, with characters like Chucky and Annabelle absolutely dominating the subgenre. Nevertheless, Blum and Wan have both shown they’re more than capable of putting their own spin on familiar stories. We suspect there’s more than meets the eye with M3GAN, particularly since the two producers went out of their way to make a killer doll movie that was different than subjectively similar films that have come before it.

“Firstly, M3GAN isn’t possessed by some supernatural entity nor by some supernatural serial killer,” said Wan. “We wanted to lean into something that was more of the real world.” The Aquaman director went on to say, “[We wanted] something that was more relevant to what’s going on today with this AI technology that is percolating and that is now coming up to the surface every [day] in our world.”

M3GAN tells the story of a life-like doll powered by artificial intelligence. The figurine was designed by a brilliant toy company roboticist named Gemma to be a child’s greatest companion and a parent’s greatest ally. The doll can listen, watch, and learn as she becomes a friend and teacher, playmate, and protector, for the child she is bonded to.

After her parents are killed in a tragic car accident, 8-year-old Cady finds herself under the care of her aunt Gemma. Under intense pressure at work and unprepared to play parent to her niece, Gemma decides to pair Cady and her M3GAN prototype in an attempt to kill two birds with one stone. Unfortunately, her decision has unimaginable consequences.

The story for M3GAN was conceived by James Wan, who also produces the film under his Atomic Monster banner. Jason Blum also serves as a producer through his company Blumhouse Productions. The forthcoming feature was helmed by Gerard Johnstone from a screenplay by Akela Cooper.

The horror flick stars Violet McGraw, Amie Donald, Allison Williams, Ronny Chieng, Arlo Green, and Jen Van Epps. Additionally, Jenna Davis provides voice work for the titular character. M3GAN is scheduled to arrive in theaters on January 6, 2023.

Meanwhile, discussions of a merger between Wan’s Atomic Monster and Blum’s Blumhouse Productions are still taking place. Should the merger go through, the move would create something of a horror empire at Universal Pictures, where Blumhouse currently has a first-look deal. It’s entirely possible the two producers are waiting to see how M3GAN performs before committing to a long-term partnership.