EXCLUSIVE: Invasion Of The Body Snatchers is coming to a pod near you, courtesy of producer John Davis and Warner Bros. David Leslie Johnson (Dungeons And Dragons, The Conjuring 2) is penning another remake of the classic film — and there couldn’t be a better remake to do. In the 1970s, the last time it was remade with Donald Sutherland, Brooke Adams and Kevin McCarthy (who had been in the first remake), the United Artists movie became a political statement about cult leaders and conspiracy theorists in the time when 900 people died at Jonestown. It has those kind of undertones.
The film is based on the 1954 sci-fi novel The Body Snatchers from author Jack Finney. The story takes place in a small town invaded by aliens who plant pods that eventually open to become humans, a copy of those who lived in the town. One by one, each citizen falls prey to these aliens as the pods are dropped alongside their beds, mature as they sleep and then replicate the human as they sleep. The alien humans, which show zero emotion, then start multiplying in the town. This is slowly figured out by a local doctor who tries to stop it, and all the while he (and the audience) never knows who is real and who is an alien ready to kill.
The book was made into a movie in 1956 and did gangbusters at the box office. A sequel came in 1978; that film equally wowed audiences and was a hit yet again. In fact, some critics noted at the time it was a perfect remake. It was remade again (if you sneezed you missed it) as Body Snatchers in 1993. The last time it was remade was in 2007 at Warner Bros with Daniel Craig and Nicole Kidman; that one (under the title The Invasion) flopped, pulling in $40 million worldwide.
Done correctly, this film certainly has the right mix as it is as much of a thriller as it is sci-fi. Johsnon has penned some pretty scary stuff (including the horror film Orphan). His other credits include Wrath Of The Titans, Red Riding Hood, Conjuring 3 and A Nightmare On Elm Street, so fans can look forward to what should be a harrowing fourth remake. And Davis is a pro, with years of experience in both film and TV (The Predator, Game Night, The Blacklist).
Johnson is repped by Paradigm.