‘Drive’ Director Nicolas Winding Refn Primed to Direct Fact-Based Horror Film ‘The Bringing’

By May 15, 2014
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Arthouse director Nicolas Winding Refn is best known for off-kilter films like Drive and Only God Forgives, so while he’s yet to direct a true studio horror film as of yet (though Valhalla Rising has enough gore to very nearly recommend it as such, and his crime franchise Pusher is jumpy enough to terrify anyone), the filmmaker has already spent many years refining his sense of tone and tension. It’s high time Refn took those skills to the thrills-and-chills genre, and now it seems he’s set to do just that — and with one heck of a story to tell.

Deadline reports that Refn is “in early talks” to direct Brandon and Phillip Murphy’s The Bringing for Sony Pictures. The film has already gotten plenty of attention because of the story that inspired it — a true tale about a mysterious death in downtown Los Angeles that continues to baffle people. As the outlet tells it, “its catalyst was a widely circulated video of a young woman who displayed erratic behavior in an elevator at the Cecil Hotel in Los Angeles, the place where such killers as Richard Ramirez called home at one time or other, and where numerous suicides have occurred. The woman, Elisa Lam, was found dead in the water tanks at the roof of the hotel.”

Deadline shares, however, that “the script has nothing really to do with that that tragedy but it created a germ of an idea focusing on a man investigating a death at the hotel, and the nightmare he stumbles into.”

As the outlet notes, “Refn must have seen the video, because while the director of Drive, Valhalla Rising and Bronson is usually courted for projects, he sought this one out.” Refn identifies himself as a major horror fan and has been looking to get into the genre with a new film, and The Bringing just might be the ticket. (Also, who wants to put money on there being a part for Refn’s constant star Ryan Gosling?)

Deadline also shares the video of Lam in the hotel elevator that sparked the Murphys’ tale. Take a look!

Chilling, right?

The Murphy brothers are becoming a hot commodity around Hollywood — while they’ve yet to release a film, they currently have four others besides The Bringing in some form of pre-production and development, including a Steve McQueen story, another horror film about a “demonic plague,” and even a comedy about sobriety.

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Kate Erbland
Kate Erbland is a staff writer for movie news and reviews at GeekNation. Her work can also be found at Film School Rejects, ScreenCrush, Vanity Fair, The Dissolve, Cosmopolitan, Bustle, amNewYork, New York Daily News, Dame Magazine, Mental Floss, Film.com, MSN Movies, and Boxoffice Magazine. She lives in New York City with two cats, two turtles, one boyfriend, and a frightening number of sensible canvas totes.