This piece was written during the 2023 WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes. Without the labor of the writers and actors currently on strike, the film being covered here wouldn’t exist.
Where the first trailer for The Exorcist: Believer set up that not one, but two girls would become possessed by the Devil, the second (and, in my opinion, much more compelling) trailer gives us more of Chris MacNeil (Ellen Burstyn) confronting the demonic force inside them both and also has said demonic force set up the stakes: Only one girl will survive, and they have to choose which one.
The Exorcist: Believer is supposed to be the first in a new trilogy, and this trailer has set the stage quite nicely while also paying homage to the first film, which came out fifty years ago this year. David Gordon Green, the filmmaker behind the most recent Halloween trilogy, is helming this one as well, and if this trailer is anything to go by, I think the film will be as riveting as it is disturbing. In other words, a great horror movie.
In addition to Burstyn, the cast includes Leslie Odom, Jr. (One Night in Miami, Hamilton), who plays Victor, the father of one of the possessed girls, as well as Ann Dowd (The Handmaid’s Tale, Hereditary) as Victor’s neighbor. Jennifer Nettles (Harriet, The Righteous Gemstones) and Norbert Leo Butz (Fosse/Verdon, Bloodline) play the parents of the other possessed girl, while Lidya Jewett (Good Girls) and newcomer Olivia O’Neill play the girls who need to be exorcised.
The movie comes to us from Blumhouse, Morgan Creek Entertainment, and Universal Pictures and premieres in theaters on Friday October 13, 2023.