Shirley Jackson’s The Haunting of Hill House is one of the greatest ghost stories ever written. So far it’s produced two adaptations. Robert Wise’s classic 1963 psychological thriller lent the tale rich cinematography and intense atmosphere. Another one came out in 1999. The less said about it the better.
Now, a new adaptation of the classic is coming and this time you’ll be able to binge watch it.
Netflix has ordered a new 10-hour series based on The Haunting of Hill House from writer/director Mike Flanagan, who gave us 2013’s Oculus and 2016’s extremely creepy Hush. The series will be co-produced by Steven Spielberg’s Amblin, a company that excels at making old things new again. Netflix was apparently so impressed by the development of the show that they ordered it straight to series.
The show will be a “modern reimagining” of Jackson’s tale and not a remake of either film version. The novel follows a group of four people, led by a paranormal investigator, who rent out the titular decades-old mansion in order to stay there and draw out proof of the supernatural. As their stays drags on, the house begins to wear them down. The characters start to question what’s really supernatural and what’s just in their heads. It’s the ultimate “Can You Survive in a Haunted House?” story.
That story has been done over and over again since Hill House set the standard, so the big question is what Flanagan and company can bring to their version that we haven’t already seen. Conceptually, it’s a perfect vehicle to deliver psychological terror: Four people, strange memories, haunted house. We’ll know soon enough whether it works in this extended format or not.