When Malignant hit cinemas last year, those who caught it on the big screen were treated to a gonzo, no-holds-barred horror riot with some of the wildest imagery and most unexpected twists of recent years. Now, the duo behind that film – James Wan and Akela Cooper – are back with an upgrade: get ready for M3GAN. Scripted by Cooper from a story she devised alongside Wan (and brought to the screen by director Gerard Johnstone), it tells the tale of a seemingly sweet AI robot (Model 3 Generative Android) who goes off the rails with killer consequences – and going by the trailer, it’s going to be another wild ride of creatively campy craziness.
Need more evidence? Just hear how Wan describes the title character. “It’s Annabelle meets The Terminator,” he laughs. Because while M3GAN is designed to bring sweet companionship to lonely kids, like Violet McGraw’s orphaned Cady, her good nature doesn’t last. “That soon goes off the rails,” Wan confirms. “I’m fascinated by things that are meant to be innocent, but become more… malign.” Makes sense, from a filmmaker who’s previously given us possessed dolls, killer ventriloquist dummies, and wimple-wearing nuns to make you whimper in terror.
For Cooper, M3GAN was about tapping into her biggest childhood fear. “My thing was ventriloquist dummies,” she laughs. “I saw the Anthony Hopkins movie Magic at a really young age and that cemented the creepiness in my brain. I was a big Child’s Play fan, too. It was always my dream to create an iconic monster of my own.” And even before the film has arrived, M3GAN has become, by internet parlance, iconic – especially for that bizarre dance sequence glimpsed in the teaser. According to Cooper, there’s even more to that scene to be discovered – the writer is “looking forward to people hearing the song choice” that accompanies the dance on screen. Start your guesses now, people – the M3GAN murder-party is about to begin.
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