first_imgThis happened during our screening in the lobby.— Simon Barrett (@Simon_Barrett) July 23, 2016Then, the movie unleashed the first trailer for the newly titled Blair Witch, revealing it starred James Allen McCune (Shameless) as the brother of the Heather Donahue character from the first film (the actors in the first film used their own names as character names). Heather’s body was never found, so he sets off into the woods where she disappeared to find out the truth about what happened to her.Early buzz about Blair Witch indicates that it doesn’t reference the ill-reviewed sequel, Blair Witch Project 2: Book of Shadows, but is more of a direct continuation of the first film in a way that could recontextualize the ending. If that sounds vague, it’s because it is vague, but it indicates the mythology of the original movie is still relevant to whatever is going to happen this year.Good thing the old Blair Witch Project mythology site is still up! It’s official. The Woods booth is now The Blair Witch booth at #SDCC. #SDCC2016— Johnny Zaccari (@JohnnyZaccari) July 23, 2016There was a screening of The Woods on Friday in San Diego and as the movie unspooled for fans and critics, the advertising all changed. The Woods ads around San Diego were replaced with Blair Witch ads, the Lionsgate booth on the convention floor changed to a Blair Witch booth, the Twitter account abandoned The Woods for @BlairWitchMovie while the screening was in progress. Surprise! There’s a new sequel to the 1999 found footage horror movie The Blair Witch Project coming out this September. Lionsgate, who is distributing the movie and has the Blair Witch rights after purchasing Artisan, managed to keep this a secret until the movie premiered at San Diego Comic-Con late Friday night. In a world where we have drones taking set photos from Star Wars movies a full year before they are due to be released, it’s quite an accomplishment that the filmmakers managed to keep Blair Witch a secret.Up until the film was finished, the movie that is now called Blair Witch was in production in Vancouver last year under the title “The Woods.” In May of this year, Lionsgate even released a trailer for The Woods without revealing the subject matter of the movie.As far as anyone knew, The Woods was just the next movie from director by Adam Wingard and writer by Simon Barrett, who had previously collaborated on other films You’re Next and The Guest. What the production managed to keep secret was that they were rebooting the Blair Witch Project franchise.“The Woods was our working title,” Wingard told Entertainment Weekly. “When we signed on to it, we knew that it was eventually going to be changed. To us, it wasn’t even going to be part of the marketing. But I think Lionsgate made a really smart decision, using that.”last_img