REEL DEAL: “INSIDIOUS” Co-Creator Now Directs “CHAPTER 3”

After penning the scripts for “Insidious” and “Insidious: Chapter 2,” Leigh Whannell takes the reins on “Insidious: Chapter 3” by stepping in for co-creator James Wan and directing the new film.

Producer Oren Peli says, “Leigh understands the world of Insidious so well and also sees all sorts of possibilities for `The Further' and for the characters grappling with it, all of which made him the perfect choice to direct the new chapter.

Producer Jason Blum elaborates, “The people who created a movie make the best sequels – which I don’t talk about with them until after they’ve made the first movie, so that it isn’t compromised – and carry the storytelling forward. When Leigh said, ‘I have an idea for a new movie,’ that was ideal. We wanted to make it as comfortable as possible for Leigh to get to do what he wanted to do in taking the director’s chair, because we all felt he should be the next director for these stories.”

For his part, the new director, Leigh Whannell offers, “It’s a privilege to be part of telling these stories that connect with people all over the world. Here was this fantastic opportunity, to be able to direct a movie that is going to be released in theaters with people having the chance to see it in a communal way. I love watching the `Insidious' movies with audiences, especially when they jump out of their chairs.”

James Wan, who had directed the previous “Insidious” movies from longtime filmmaking partner Whannell’s screenplays, remarks, “I am amazed and proud to see what Leigh has done with `Insidious: Chapter 3.' Leigh understands the nuances that you need to create horror scenes, to create suspense and tension.

“There was no better person to take the reins of the Insidious franchise; I was honored to pass the torch on to my great bud! When I see him directing, even though this was his first feature, he looks like a natural. He’s so comfortable and he has fun doing it.”

“I’ve had a great education,” says Whannell. “This came from sitting behind James and watching him direct, and seeing what he does in the cutting room, with music, with all of it. He is the master of modern horror.

“We both have similar tastes: we like to shoot continuously and not rely on editing or CG effects, working with what’s practical within the camera and within the frame.”

Even so, the writer/director notes that “my style is a little different than James’s, which is important because while I am following the template of the first two movies and Insidious: Chapter 3 certainly exists in the same universe, I knew I wasn’t going to do a carbon copy of what James did. I wanted to continue to build up these stories’ world but not repeat what we’d done before.”

As it happened, production of “Insidious: Chapter 3” overlapped with the making of Wan’s newest movie as director, the big-budget “Fast & Furious 7.” Wan was still able to visit Whannell’s set multiple times – and can be glimpsed on-screen in a cameo role – but more frequently kept up with the project by way of modern communication. “I would text Leigh with scare tips,” remembers Wan. “He would text me back with how to blow up cars [for Furious 7]!

“We were doing what we always do in person anyway – bounce ideas off each other, and help each other out on projects.”

“Insidious: Chapter 3” has been given a Parental Guidance (PG) rating by the MTRCB. This movie contains scenes with several scary and horrifying images, blasting sounds, and themes (a child communicating with the dead, dealing with the supernatural, etc.) that may be disturbing for very young viewers. Parental guidance and discretion is strictly advised.

Opening across the Philippines on June 05, 2015, “Insidious: Chapter 3” is distributed by Columbia Pictures, local office of Sony Pictures Releasing International.

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