The prolific Teresa Palmer, who has six films in the can readying for release (including John Hillcoat crime drama Triple 9 and Terrence Malick’s Knight of Cups), just signed on for the James Wan-produced horror pic Lights Out.
In a return to the horror genre, where she first made an impression in 2006’s The Grudge 2, Palmer will topline as an imperilled mother. Gabriel Bateman (CBS’ Stalker) was previously announced to be taking on the role of the young son in a family haunted by a supernatural entity that can only be seen in the dark. With everyone at risk, one family member is forced to battle the evil spirit head on.
David F. Sandberg will make his directorial debut on the pic, adapting his terrifying short of the same name. Lawrence Grey and Eric A. Heisserer are attached as producers, with Heisserer scripting an expansion of Sandberg’s story.
Atomic Monster is behind the film, reteaming with New Line after last fall’s financially successful frightener Annabelle. Wan’s involvement is particular cause for excitement – the helmer delivered two terrifying franchises in The Conjuring and Insidious. In a neat parallel, Wan got his start directing a little horror short called Saw, which he eventually wrote and directed a feature film version of, launching a lucrative franchise. The director may see similar potential in Sandberg and Lights Out.
As for Palmer, she’s certainly a terrific actress to recruit for the pic. She’s pretty in-demand right now, too – in addition to the aforementioned projects, she’ll appear in Warner Bros.’ Point Break remake, Nicholas Sparks adaptation The Choice, drama Message from the King and thriller 2:22. Audiences may already know her, though – she co-led zombie rom-com Warm Bodies with Nicholas Hoult, was one of the best parts of ’80s throwback Take Me Home Tonight and had memorable supporting roles in The Sorcerer’s Apprentice and I Am Number Four.