Ethan Hawke has just joined the cast of Blumhouse’s The Black Phone. Doctor Strange director Scott Derrickson is at the helm of the upcoming movie, which is based on Joe Hill’s short story of the same name. Derrickson is directing from a script that he co-wrote with frequent collaborator C. Robert Cargill. Blumhouse and Universal first announced The Black Phone late last year, and Cargill said, “Joe’s short story is amazing. Scott and I have been talking about making it for almost a decade now.”
It was previously announced that Jeremy Davies had joined the cast of The Black Phone. Ethan Hawke will now join him for the production, which is set to begin next month in North Carolina. Hawke is a four-time Academy Award- nominated actor and screenwriter. He made his television debut in Showtime’s limited series, The Good Lord Bird, which he also executive produced and co-wrote, based on the National Book Award-winning novel by James McBride. The Good Lord Bird, produced by Blumhouse Television, is a seven-part limited series shot mostly in Virginia that brilliantly mixes history with imagination in its retelling of the story of abolitionist John Brown, played by Hawke.
However, horror fans will be more excited about Ethan Hawke’s involvement since he previously collaborated with Scott Derrickson on the 2012 movie Sinister. It’s also the It’s the ninth time Hawke has worked with Jason Blum. The Black Phone focuses on an abducted young boy, John Finney, who has been placed in a fortified basement by a killer. Finney is locked in a basement that’s stained with the blood of half a dozen other murdered children. In the cellar with him is an antique telephone, long since disconnected, but which rings at night with calls from the dead.
Joe Hill’s 20th Century Ghosts is a collection of short stories that was first published in 2005. The collection has won several awards including the Bram Stoker Award for Best Fiction Collection, along with the British Fantasy Award for Best Collection and Best Short Story for Best New Horror. The hardcover editions are rare, with only 200 in existence. The Joe Hill book was published again in 2007 with an added story, though The Black Phone seems to be the most well-known out of the rest. It is unclear when Blumhouse plans on releasing The Black Phone, but a release in 2022 seems plausible, especially if the production runs smooth. For now, we’ll just have to wait and see where movie theaters are in the next handful of months.
Scott Derrickson, Robert C. Cargill, and Jason Blum, for Blumhouse, are producing the movie. Universal and Blumhouse will present the Crooked Highway Production. Joe Hill is on board as an executive producer. The official Blumhouse Twitter account was the first to confirm that Ethan Hawke has joined the cast of The Black Phone.