Fully aware of how remakes and sequels are perceived by the public, the producers felt there was enough material in the Jay Anson book to warrant a new version of The Amityville Horror and that horror fans would be willing to accept another look at the story of the Lutz family.
After hiring screenwriter Scott Kosar to come up with a script, the producers settled on commercial director Andrew Douglas to helm the project. As with the original book and the first film, this Amityville Horror follows the story of George and Kathy Lutz who, along with their young children, endured 28 days of hell while living in a house in Amityville, Long Island.
What a Successful Commercial Director Brings to a Feature Film: After directing hundreds of commercials, including ads for Nike, Coca-Cola, and Verizon, Andrew Douglas was offered the chance to make The Amityville Horror as his directorial feature film debut. Douglas knew it would be a tough transition, but he also recognized why he got the job. I think what theyre expecting me to bring to it was a look. I think thats why they import us from commercials, to kind of give genre films, especially like horror films or action films, a look. Because what our day job is to some extent is the new thing, the new thing, the new thing I hope I brought something else as well, because I tried hard to. Who knows? I dont know. I cant tell. I tried to bring a level of performance sophistication to a horror film, as well.
Casting Ryan Reynolds Might Not Appear to be the Obvious Choice: No, but when you see him youll completely understand why. And Melissa [George] actually. They bring such a level of talent to it that is surprising in a horror film actually. I hope it makes it a bit more durable.
The Desire to Make This Version a More Character-Driven, Psychological Thriller Than the Original Film: I would like to say so but you know youll be a better judge of that than me, really. I mean, certainly I tried to make it so. It was where I was the most nervous as a newbie. Because I felt I was completely competent in the imagery and I have a grisly imagination, so I made the scares as horrible as I could. Where I was a bit scared was in directing first division talent because Id never done it. So I worked hard at that I had a good time doing that.
Was Director Douglas Nervous About Doing a Remake?: No. you know, its a generation ago. I remember it, you may remember it, but really a lot of people dont. It was a good film at the time, but its a great story.
Its funny because a lot of horror films are more or less telling the same story. You know, The Shining and Poltergeist and Amityville are terribly close. It seems to me theyre a little bit like fairy tales anyway. Theyre interchangeable and you know they are perennials. We can tell them again. [You] just tell it a different way and tell it for another generation and maybe emphasize one thing or another. I think thats completely legitimate. And it didnt bother me at all. Not really.
Does the Director of The Amityville Horror Believe the Story?: I sure believe the serial killing because thats documented. And Im inclined to believe the other just because if I doubt the other, that means when I die, Im dead. But if I believe there are ghosts then maybe Ill have another go-round.