David Gordon Green Exits Next ‘Exorcist’ Film as Universal and Blumhouse Look for New Director

David Gordon Green is parting ways with “The Exorcist: Deceiver” sequel reboot after previously directing “The Exorcist: Believer.”

The 2023 horror film disappointed at the box office even while bringing back the original “The Exorcist” stars Ellen Burstyn and Linda Blair. Sequel “The Exorcist: Deceiver” was slated to be released by Universal on April 18, 2025.

The Hollywood Reporter first reported the news and revealed that “The Exorcist: Deceiver” has been removed from the Universal release calendar. Production company Blumhouse is looking for a new director for the film. IndieWire has reached out to those involved.

Green reportedly is stepping away from “The Exorcist: Deceiver” to focus on “Nutcrackers,” a film starring Ben Stiller, and Season 4 of HBO’s “The Righteous Gemstones,” which he executive-produces. Antoine Fuqua’s Michael Jackson biopic “Michael” meanwhile is taking the April 18, 2025 release date for Universal’s international rollout of the Lionsgate film.

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Green was set to direct a full “Exorcist” trilogy at Universal as announced in July 2021. The three-picture production deal with Universal and streaming platform Peacock was priced at “$400 million-plus,” with Green planning on writing and directing each film. The slated trilogy, much like Green’s “Halloween” reboot, serves as a direct sequel to the original “The Exorcist.” William Friedkin directed the 1973 original, which four films followed before 2023’s “Believer.” The latest entry grossed $136 million worldwide after opening October 6, 2023.

Green previously revived the “Halloween” franchise with a trilogy starring Jamie Lee Curtis, culminating in 2022’s “Halloween Ends.” Upon “The Exorcist: Believer” release, Green told IndieWire that he “studied ‘The Exorcist‘ for many years” before reimagining the franchise.

“There’s no way that a sequel, reboot, or remake can ever be as profound and shocking as when that subject matter and execution was unleashed on the culture in 1973,” Green said. “But we can continue the story of characters we love and meet them in a contemporary world where the effects of the events in Georgetown 50 years ago mirror the effects of the success of that film on our outside world. I thought that would be fun to explore.”

Green also speculated what original “The Exorcist” director William Friedkin would think about “Believer.” The 1973 film earned Best Picture and Best Director Oscar nominations.

Meanwhile, “Scream 7” recently also lost a director with Christopher Landon leaving the Spyglass production following the firing of Melissa Barrera and Jenna Ortega’s exit. Fellow ’70s horror franchise “The Omen” is getting a new treatment thanks to upcoming prequel “The First Omen.”

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