Goodness. Asking this question is opening a huge can of worms. Exorcist fans who followed the disastrous trail of the prequel being made since it was announced by film studio Morgan Creek will know what I mean. There were signs that this project was doomed to fail from the beginning… (no pun intended).
Here’s a very simplistic breakdown of events:
- Morgan Creek Studios announced they were going to produce a prequel to The Exorcist. Its working title was Exorcist 4:1.
- John Frankenhiemer was signed on direct. Then he got sick. Then he passed away.
- Morgan Creek announced that the prequel was going ahead and that Paul Schrader would be directing. They changed the name to Exorcist: Dominion.
- Filming went ahead and when the first cut was completed, Morgan Creek turned their noses up at it. Paul Schrader fought for them to wait and see the final cut but they gave him the boot and, deciding his film just wasn’t scary enough.
- They hired Renny Harlin to direct the ˜patch-up’ scenes and ˜fix’ the film. He did that and released the film that you know as Exorcist: The Beginning. It was bad.
- A year later, Paul Schrader decided his version was better and convinced Morgan Creek to let him patch it up and release it on DVD. They agreed. He released his version as Dominion: Prequel to The Exorcist. It was better than The Beginning, but not that much better.
And so goes the tail of the two studio films which were a debacle from the beginning, and never really made a dent on the movie industry. We now wonder what on earth Morgan Creek will do with their license to use The Exorcist name in the future. Just be sure to always touch wood when using the words ‘Exorcist’ and ‘remake’.