Well, that didn’t take long.
New Line Cinema has ordered a sequel to horror film Lights Out. The $US4.9 million film has thus far raked in over $US36.1 million worldwide, and it opened under one week ago.
Deadline has reported that director David F. Sandberg will return at the helm of the sequel, which will also see scribe Eric Heisserer back on screenwriting duties.
It’s quite the success story. Lights Out is based on Sandberg’s own short film, which went viral not long after they uploaded the short online. Interestingly, Sandberg told Deadline one of the reasons for initially making short films was to earn the attention of the film financing body in his home country, Sweden.
“My wife and I tried to get money to do movies in Sweden, applying for grants, and we got turned down,” Sandberg said.
“I said, screw it. I have a camera and she’s an actress. I got lights from IKEA, we built our own dolly and made Cam Closer, this short where a phone allows you to see the future, and a woman sees her murder and then tries to stop it.”
Cam Closer didn’t do much for Sandberg’s career, but he decided to keep it going. He soon eyed a British competition, and made Lights Out as his entry.
“I figured, that was fun, we’ll keep doing it, but then a couple months after, [Lights Out] started spreading online and suddenly it was getting millions of views and I was getting emails from managers, agents, producers and studios. The whole plan was to make no-budget shorts to get the Swedish Film Institute’s attention to get a grant, but then New Line called.”
And just like that, the ball was officially rolling. And Sandberg isn’t stopping. Now that he’s officially a part of James Wan‘s overall production output (Wan produced Lights Out under his Atomic Monster banner), there looks to be no shortage of offers. Sandberg is currently in the process of directing sequel Annabelle 2 and New Line is reportedly in the process of acquiring another of his short films for a feature.