This week has been like Christmas for fans of the Amityville franchise. It has only been a few days since Hannibal Classics announced plans to make The Amityville Legacy and now Dimension, the same studio responsible for the 2005 remake has announced an “official” sequel called The Amityville Horror: The Lost Tapes.
Tapes focuses on the period of time immediately after the Lutzes fled the home on Ocean Avenue through “found footage” dating back to 1976. The footage comes from an ambitious female reporter (probably based on Long Island reporter Laura Didio) who is on the verge of breaking the most famous haunted house case in the world. She leads a team of journalists, clergy and paranormal researchers into an investigation of the events that were later turned into the book and movieThe Amityville Horror. Naturally, she gets more than she bargained for.
The real Laura Didio played a pivotal role in the Amityville story. After the Lutzes fled and began talking to the press it was Laura who suggested that the local Long Island news do a story on the now infamous house. On February 24, 1976 she lead a crew into the abandoned Lutz home along with demonologists Ed and Lorraine Warren to conduct a séance. The proceedings were televised but nothing ghostly occurred. You can see a short clip of Laura discussing the evening below…along with the now famous “ghost boy” image that came out of that investigation.
I have no way of knowing if this new film is in any way based on Didio but the story certainly seems inspired by the events of February 24, 1976. Even though Dimension is behind this movie I doubt we’ll see Ryan Reynolds and Mellssa George reprising their roles as the terrified Lutzes. The format does intrigue me though.
The Lost Tapes is not to be confused with The Amityville Tapes, a direct-to-video film from MGM that was in development back in 2009 but was apparently shelved. This new film is slated for a 2012 release.