Even when Oren Peli’s Paranormal Activity spearheaded a resurgence in the found-footage horror genre back in 2009, not even the film’s most admiring fans could have guessed that the series would still be going strong five years later. And yet, the latest installment in the series, spin-off Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones, grossed an estimated $18.2 million at the box office last week and has been receiving some of the most favorable reviews of the entire franchise (check out Matt Donato’s positive write-up here).
With a fifth Paranormal Activity film set to open this October, The Marked Ones director Christopher Landon recently revealed that plans are already in place for a grand series finale a few installments down the line. Speaking with /Film, Landon noted that his addition was always intended to start putting together the big picture for the Paranormal Activity series. He said that the film’s shocking finale was, “by design, part of a bigger piece of the mythology. We’re trying to tee up things that are coming, especially in [Paranormal Activity] 5.”
Landon then added that:
We’ve always been looking ahead. I’ll say this much. There is a very specific end goal and I’m hoping we have enough time in the franchise to get there. We have a really big idea that’s at the finish line but we need time to get there. So we’re hoping the fans keep coming back and allow us to get them there.
On the subject of the “big idea,” Landon revealed that pieces of what lies ahead for the franchise first were put into place early on, somewhat unintentionally:
The beginning of that started in Oren’s movie. I don’t think Oren realized it then, because when he made the first movie it felt like a stand alone movie, but then when we started making 2 and we started to see the potential and possibility there for a franchise, that’s when the real think tank element came in to play and we really started to throw out crazy ideas. Then, over the course of the last couple movies, we came to a really good, interesting place.
We’ll likely get a little more insight into what terrifying developments are in store for the series when Paranormal Activity 5 opens on October 24th, though with a witch coven, demonic possession and creepy ghosts all factoring into the mix, the sky’s really the limit for this franchise, and those involved will likely try to get as much juice out of the series as humanly possible.
In the mean time, however, what theories do you have about where the Paranormal Activity series is headed? Sound off in the comments section!