The Amityville haunting has been the subject of an endless parade of films dating back to 1979’s The Amityville Horror, but what’s less common to see is a whole movie dedicated to the tragedy that preceded this alleged case of paranormal activity. That’s where The Amityville Murders comes in, with the film set to offer a fictionalized account of the events leading up to the night Ronald DeFeo, Jr. murdered his family with a high-powered rifle – a crime he later claimed to have committed after hearing voices in the house plotting against him.
The feature will be released by Skyline Entertainment, who’ve just shared a new photo from the movie, in which John Robinson (Elephant) can be seen brandishing his gun in the role of DeFeo. The unveiling came with a statement from Skyline CEO Jim Jacobsen, who praised writer-director Daniel Farrands for his work:
“We are really excited about this title. As a new company, we look for films with big brand recognition and a built-in audience. Fans will not be disappointed as Dan Farrands and the team knocked it out of the park with this one.”
The cast also includes Paul Ben-Victor (Daredevil), Chelsea Ricketts (Crooked Arrows) and Diane Franklin (Better Off Dead) as members of the DeFeo family, alongside Lainie Kazan (My Big Fat Greek Wedding) and Burt Young (Rocky), and it should go without saying that this film won’t be for everyone.
While it’s one thing to make a load of spooky movies around the reported hauntings that followed in the DeFeo house, to tackle the murders themselves head on is really moving into some sensitive territory, and given Farrands’ track record in the horror genre, it’s unlikely that the director intends to tread lightly.
Incidentally, Farrands has already moved on to his next project: an anthology of supernatural stories inspired by true events, including The Haunting of Nicole Brown Simpson and The Haunting of Sharon Tate, both of which received backlash upon announcement, and the latter of which was decried by Sharon Tate’s own sister Debra Tate as “tasteless.” You can expect The Amityville Murders to be met with similar criticism in the coming months, but if it looks like your kind of horror, then you can see it in theaters, on VOD and on Digital HD from February 8th, 2019.