EXCLUSIVE: Amblin Partners is closing a deal to turn the horror short Whisper into a feature film. Julian Terry, who directed the short, is finalizing a deal to helm the movie.
The Picture Company partners Andrew Rona and Alex Heineman are producing. Bryce McGuire will write the script. The short is a scary scenario in which household tech devices are used as a gateway for a supernatural entity that has scores to settle. Sources say the feature version has a Poltergeist feel which seems a good fit for Amblin. The producers shopped the package last week and Amblin execs Andrew Calof and Jeb Brody moved quickly to secure it.
The short lasts just long enough to create a scare, and its brevity and proof of concept makes it reminiscent of shorts like Mama, the Spanish short film that launched the careers of It‘s Andy and Barbara Muschietti.
It’s the second deal for a short film transfer for The Picture Company and Amblin. They are currently in production on the first, Larry, which stars Gillian Jacobs and newcomer Azhy Robertson playing a troubled young boy who connects with a creature through his tech devices like his smart phone. Jacob Chase, director of the short and the feature version of Larry, is an exec producer on Whisper.
The Picture Company also set the short Meet Jimmy at Paramount with Platinum Dunes; with Terry, they set the horror short They Hear It at Legendary, with David Robert Mitchell now writing the script. Terry will direct the film.
McGuire, who’ll write the movie script for Whisper, recently sold his own horror short, Night Swim to New Line with James Wan producing. McGuire is adapting that one. Terry is repped by Paradigm and Good Fear, McGuire by Gersh. Chase is repped by Paradigm.
Here is the short film Whisper: