Two years on and we’re still none the wiser about whether Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman‘s debut film “Catfish” was in fact a documentary or not. Regardless, few would argue that it’s anything but a compelling watch, and that’s more than you can say for their follow up — “Paranormal Activity 3” -– despite their best efforts. Thanks to the mammoth box office haul of the latter, however, they were invited back to direct the fourth entry in the franchise (which is currently in pre-production) and that should keep them busy until its release around Halloween later this year.
Don’t bet on them being back for a third time though, because the pair have signed on to write and direct an adaptation of the Edward Abbey novel “The Monkey Wrench Gang.” The story follows, according to Deadline, “a gang of four guys who try to battle over-development in the American West in the 70s. They do this with bumbling attempts at sabotage, attacking deserted bulldozers, construction equipment and trains, with a vow they will not harm a human, animal, plant or rock. Well, three of the quartet take that to heart; the fourth, a young Vietnam vet named Hayduke, wants to blow shit up.”
We suspect that the pair will start work on this once they wrap on PA4, and the nature of that franchise probably means that they have relatively few press commitments attached, so they’ll be able to get started fairly swiftly after. It does suggest that they’ll have little time to return to that franchise, but who knows, we can’t imagine it’s the most demanding of directorial gigs. This is an interesting change of pace for the pair though, and we probably have yet to see just how talented they are. Their first film got people talking, their second got people watching – and if they could marry both of those for this novel adaptation, we’d be extremely impressed.