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The Monkey: Stephen King adaptation from James Wan and Osgood Perkins is deliberately comedic

Director Osgood Perkins is making his adaptation of Stephen King’s The Monkey, produced by James Wan, deliberately comedic

The Monkey: Stephen King adaptation from James Wan and Osgood Perkins is deliberately comedic

Back in March, we heard that production had wrapped on the Stephen King adaptation The Monkey, which is coming our way from the team of producer / genre regular James Wan and director Osgood Perkins, whose credits include The Blackcoat’s Daughter (a.k.a. February), I Am the Pretty Thing That Lives in the HouseGretel & Hansel, and the upcoming Nicolas Cage horror film Longlegs , which will be reaching theatres on July 12th (you can read our review HERE), courtesy of Neon – and they’ll also be be giving The Monkey a theatrical release on February 21, 2025. So we’ll be getting two Osgood Perkins movies from Neon just seven months apart – and while doing the press rounds for Longlegs, Perkins has revealed that he has made The Monkey “deliberately comedic.”

During an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Perkins was asked to confirm that The Monkey is “the funniest movie he’s ever made?” (Which wouldn’t be a tough hurdle to clear, since his movies up to this point have been far from being comedies.) Perkins confirmed it is. “By far. It’s deliberately comedic. It’s feeling more like an old John Landis movie or a Joe Dante movie or a Robert Zemeckis movie. I saw an opportunity to make a wry, absurdist comedy about death. It’s about the very basic fact that we all die — and how f*cking funny and weird and impossible and surreal is that shit? And to come at it from a tragicomedy kind of voice felt like it fit. At the end of the day, if you want to reduce it, it’s the haunted toy or evil toy subgenre, and I couldn’t imagine doing a serious one of those. To me, it rang utterly false to approach it that way, so I just went in the other direction. For me, the movie is a smile from top to bottom, and I’m really looking forward to people seeing it.

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Perkins wrote the screenplay for The Monkey, working from a King short story. The film will tell the following story: When twin brothers Hal and Bill discover their father’s old monkey toy in the attic, a series of gruesome deaths starts occurring all around them. The brothers decide to throw the monkey away and move on with their lives, growing apart over the years. But when the mysterious deaths begin again, the brothers must reunite to find a way to destroy the monkey for good before it takes the lives of everyone close to them.

Theo James (The White Lotus) plays the twins in later years, while Christian Convery (Sweet Tooth) plays them in their younger days. Also in the cast are Elijah Wood (The Lord of the Rings), Tatiana Maslany (SheHulkAttorney at Law), Colin O’Brien (Wonka), Rohan Campbell (Halloween Ends), and Sarah Levy (Schitt’s Creek).

James Wan and Michael Clear are producing The Monkey for Atomic Monster, while Jason Cloth and Dave Caplan produce for C2 Motion Picture Group. Executive producers include Brian Kavanaugh-Jones and Fred Berger of Automatik, Peter Luo and Nancy Xu of Stars Collective, John Friedberg of Black Bear, and Chris Ferguson. Atomic Monster and Stars Collective developed the project, and C2 Motion Picture Group provided the financing.

Wan previously provided the following statement: “Stephen King is the godfather of the horror genre. He had a huge influence on me as a child and throughout my career and it’s always been a dream to help bring one of his stories to life. The Monkey is a personal favorite, with its simple, iconic, and incredibly marketable conceit. And I can’t imagine anyone better than a visionary and lifelong genre fan like Osgood to bring this to life.

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In addition to directing the films mentioned at the top of this article, Perkins directed an episode of the recent revival of The Twilight Zone. He has also worked on the screenplays for the thriller Removal, the crime thriller Cold Comes the Night, and the horror film The Girl in the Photographs.

What do you think of The Monkey being deliberately comedic? Share your thoughts on this one by leaving a comment below.

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