After the success of Scream (2022), we could almost predict this. Never the less, still exciting for fans of this particular ’90s horror franchise. Sony are prepping a sequel to the Kevin Williamson-penned I Know What You Did Last Summer (1997) with original stars Jennifer Love Hewitt and Freddie Prinze Jr said to be returning to reprise their roles for what will, like Scream, be somewhat of a continuation and reboot – returning players meeting new franchise torch-bearers.
An I Know What You Did Last Summer remake had been looked at in previous years, but didn’t come off, while a loose continuation of the original franchise – again with Love Hewitt said to be involved – had also been in the mix for a while (see here).
This new film, which original producer Neal H.Moritz is involved in, will be penned by Leah McKendrick and directed by Jennifer Kaytin Robinson (Do Revenge). Per Deadline :
While McKendrick is penning the pic, the idea for the new film came from Robinson and McKendrick, who blew away studio execs when they pitched this idea for a sequel last fall.. Once the idea was pitched by Robinson and McKendrick, the next step was getting Hewitt and Prinze back on board, which the two were game for after hearing the pitch.
Before it was decided to reboot the property for Television, Jeffrey Howard and writing partner Mike Flanagan were attached to a fourth film in the original film series for Sony, with original ‘Final Girl’ Hewitt reprising her role as Julie James.
Speaking to Bloody Disgusting’s podcast Phantom Limbs a couple of years back, co-writer Howard (“Gerald’s Game”, “Ouija : Origin of Evil”, “Occulus”) explained how the soft reboot came together and dropped some hints about the plot.
“We just kept saying ‘no’, and they kept calling back and asking. They were just so nice, and you know how it is – when you spend years trying to knock on doors when you’re eventually pursued by people whose stuff you really like, it’s really cool. We went in for the meeting … and their whole thing was ‘Why don’t you just go make up a take? Whatever you want. As long as it thematically fits in with the title and that kind of world, you can just make up whatever you want.’”
Flanagan and Howard came up with a story that would’ve seen the heroine of the original two films (the third, DTV effort “I’ll Always Know What You Did Last Summer” featured a new cast of characters) returning to face the monster of the franchise again.
“It would’ve been a great part for her, too. That was the design the entire time, and it would’ve been so much fun.”
The script, I’ve heard, wouldn’t have fixed on the antagonist as much as the original films did and Julie would’ve been the only carry-over character from the previous films to appear.
Speaking to /film a few years back, Howard said “Our I Know What You Did Last Summer fits into a world of all of these Netflix series that go on now about killing cases. It’s really a complement to where we are now so I hope they make it. It’s not a docudrama like that but it fits into that world very well. It’s like one of those stories done as a pretty cool movie.”
The writer went on to say his script encompassed a ”little Agatha Christie. It’s got a little true crime”.
The “I Know” films are based on the 1973 young-adult suspense novel by Lois Duncan. The first two films saw Love Hewitt’s character, and friends, being stalked by a killer (Muse Watson) after conspiring to cover up a fatal car accident.