We were big fans of the first Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark film from director André Øvredal, so we’re extra thrilled that the filmmaker is officially on board to direct the sequel. The first movie, based on the children’s book series from author Alvin Schwartz and illustrator Stephen Gammell, was a surprise hit when it was released last year, so a sequel was inevitable. But Øvredal’s return wasn’t a sure bet until now.
The exciting news also has us wondering which of Schwartz’s stories will appear in the next film. If you recall, the first movie weaved several stories from the series into a narrative feature. Those stories included “Harold,” “The Big Toe,” “The Red Dot,” “The Dream,” “Me Tie Dough-ty Walker,” and “The Haunted House.” Schwartz wrote three volumes of Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, each containing 25 to 29 stories, so there’s plenty to choose from for the next movie.
Here are a few of our favorites that we’d love to see in the sequel.
“The Bed by the Window”
This spooky story is set in a hospital where the patients argue over who gets to sleep in the titular bed, one that offers a beautiful view. The patients battle it out, unafraid to kill each other. One man finally succeeds and gets the coveted spot, only to find that it actually faces a brick wall. He spends his final days staring at this canvas of nothingness.
It’s hard to say if this story is all that cinematic; the first film dealt more with iconic monsters from the series. But we’d love to see Øvredal tackle existential horror in the sequel, something that tests the characters’ intentions and morals.
“The Dead Hand”
This story follows a man named Tom who foolishly boasts that he’s not afraid of anything. His neighbors fear the dark, and to prove them wrong, Tom takes on a bet to stay in an allegedly haunted swamp all night. Once he’s in the swamp, the hand of an unseen monster pulls him into darkness, and when Tom emerges, he’s missing a hand and has gone insane.
“The Dead Hand” would make for an awesome sequence on the big screen, as it’s got the trademark visuals but also an air of mystery. We never learn more about this monster or what happened to Tom, which is all the more frightening.
“Maybe You Will Remember”
Possibly the scariest story in the entire Scary Stories franchise, this one follows a young girl named Rosemary on vacation with her mother in Paris. Her mother falls ill, so Rosemary takes her to the doctor. The doctor tells Rosemary she must take a taxi across down to pick up medicine from his home. But she soon realizes the taxi is purposely taking her in the wrong direction and is seemingly stalling. When she finally returns, Rosemary finds that the hospital looks different than she remembers and she is unable to locate her mother. The doctors say they don’t recall either of them ever being in the hospital.
What makes this even scarier is the revelation (found in a different part of the book) that Rosemary’s mother actually had the Black Plague and to avoid widespread panic, the hospital staff killed her, disposed of her body, and painted the hospital while Rosemary was away. Rosemary never learns of this and is instead left to question her own sanity. Is anything more terrifying than that?
This extremely short tale is perfectly haunting. It follows a group of fisherman caught in a storm who take refuge in an abandoned home. They think they are alone, but soon they hear a woman screaming and a man taunting her. There’s a brief silence, then a loud laugh and the sound of the man dragging the woman down the stairs.
The scariest thing about “Sounds”? The fisherman fail to intervene or even think of saving the woman, and only experience true fear when they realize the killer might come for them next. It’s another story from the series that plays on societal topics, like disregard for violence against women and only prioritizing your own safety. The first Scary Stories film wasn’t afraid to get political; this could be another chance to inject the sequel with something timely.
This one is based on an urban legend many of us know all to well and have feared for years. It’s a cautionary tale for drivers every, especially young women. It follows a woman driving home at night who is trailed by a large truck flashing its lights at her. Annoyed, the woman tries to avoid the truck, but it continues to follow her. She arrives home, her father calls the police, and when they arrive the story gets its terrifying twist: There was a man in her backseat with a knife. The truck with the flashing lights was trying to warn her.
We’d love to see the Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark sequel bring this terrifying vision to life.
Featured Image: CBS Films