Netflix has closed an intriguing deal, as Deadline reports today that the world’s largest streamer will be the new home for a trilogy of Fear Street horror films from author R.L. Stine. The films had originally been produced at Chernin Entertainment for 20th Century Fox, but like so many other Fox properties after its acquisition by Netflix, it’s being shed, presumably for not fitting in well with the Disney aesthetic. Netflix will premiere all three Fear Street films in the summer or 2021, during a promotion they’ll apparently be calling The Summer of Fear.
The Fear Street series isn’t as well-remembered today as the more famous Goosebumps, but the two had much in common. R.L. Stine—who we interviewed last year on the legacy of Goosebumps—conceived Fear Street as a more mature horror series for young adults, rather than the accessible Goosebumps books that were mainly aimed at elementary school kids. The trio of Fear Street films, meanwhile, were all directed and co-written by Leigh Janiak, who brought us the genuinely disturbing Honeymoon in 2014 and has since directed several episodes of the Scream TV series. The films were initially intended for theatrical distribution, which suggests they likely had at least decently sized budgets.
According to Deadline, the premise is as follows:
The Fear Street saga starts in 1994, where a group of teens find out that a terrifying series of events in their hometown of Shadyside, Ohio, might be connected. Worse, the teens might be next up as targets. The films cover three different time periods, including the 1600s.
Starring is an ensemble cast of young actors, including Kiana Madeira, Olivia Welch, Benjamin Flores Jr, Gillian Jacobs, Darrell Britt-Gibson, Ashley Zukerman, Fred Hechinger, Julia Rehwald and Jeremy Ford. We’ll bring you more information on Fear Street as it develops, but it will be interesting to see how many resources Netflix throws behind what looks like a pretty high-profile series of youth horror films.