by Graham Pierrepoint
Say what you like about M Night Shyamalan – he’s been responsible for a huge number of big movies over the years, some of which have posed some serious posers. The Sixth Sense and Signs are arguably his most critically well-received, and he’s seen a form of career renaissance in the creepily brilliant Split from earlier this year – but, at the same time, his work has been derided for a number of reasons. Movies such as The Last Airbender and After Earth have been critically savaged, and it has taken the director considerable work to claw back into the hearts and minds of moviegoers. Split was a true return to form – just complex enough, and with an ending sting that got people excited to see more of his movies.
He’s also dabbled in TV work – and it was thought for considerable time that the director would be bringing back a classic series to US network TNT. It’s not been long since the network discussed working with Shyamalan to develop a new version of Tales From The Crypt – over a year ago, in fact – and it can hardly be argued that Shyamalan’s trademark twists and turns wouldn’t be at home on the landmark horror anthology series. Certainly, US TV seems to be missing this type of anthology tale – reboots of The Twilight Zone have come and gone, and true TV buffs will remember spooky spiritual sequel Night Gallery – and we certainly think a new version of the Cryptkeeper’s chilling tales would have found a place in a new generation of viewers’ hearts.
However, it seems that it’s not to be. TNT boss Kevin Reilly has advised Deadline that legal matters allowed the project to stumble before it really got going, meaning that the network lost considerable time in waiting for clearance. It seems that Reilly is keen to progress with working with Alien director and visionary Ridley Scott instead – meaning that Shyamalan followers may have to wait and see what he brings to the big screen instead.
Without spoiling Split and its amazing in-credits stinger, the movie’s ending allowed viewers to consider a movie they perhaps hadn’t seen in several years – portrayed in such a twist fashion that a number of doors are now opened up for the director to return to some of his old creations to breathe in new life and energy. If Split is Shyamalan at his current best, then we have nothing to fear from his creative future.