'Final Destination' creator says new film won't follow the franchise 'formula' fans expect

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It's been more than a decade since Final Destination 5, the film that seemingly ended one of the most prolific horror franchises of the early 2000s by bringing it all full circle to the beginning. But the long drought is almost over for Final Destination fans. We got word early this year that a sixth film is finally on the way in the form of an HBO Max original, and according to the franchise's original creator, it'll be unlike any other Final Destination story we've seen yet.

Speaking to Dread Central, Jeffrey Reddick -- who created the concept for the first film in 2000 and co-wrote both Final Destination and Final Destination 2 -- noted that while he's not involved in the upcoming revival of the franchise, he has been in touch with both longtime producer Craig Perry and screenwriters Lori Evans Taylor and Guy Busick, who wanted his input to make sure they were getting the approach right after all these years.

"The good thing is Craig Perry – who... I call 'the godfather of the project' – he's always kept me in the loop of what's going on," Reddick said. "And I did actually speak to the screenwriters... they were very curious... they wanted to talk to me and just kind of get some insights into what I thought was crucial to the Final Destination franchise and some ideas and stuff like that. Yeah, I had a very wonderful conversation with them – I'm really excited with the story that I can't tell you about (laughs)."

Releasing five films over 11 years beginning with Final Destination in 2000, the horror franchise has traditionally focused on a group of (usually young) people who manage to avoid dying in some major catastrophe when one of them has a premonition that disaster is coming. Through this premonition they are able to "cheat death," but Death is a determined force, and eventually comes for each of them through a series of elaborate accidents and mishaps.

Though certain tweaks have been made to the structure and mythology of the series over various installments -- including the idea that you can take another person's lifespan by killing them -- that idea of cheating death for a very limited time has remained baked into Final Destination from the beginning. According to Reddick, that may be set to change in some unexpected ways with the new film. While he couldn't spill any story details, he did suggest a bit of a shake-up to the old way of doing things.

"I will say that it's not just going to be another kind of 'we set up a group of people, they cheat death, and then just death gets them,'" he said. "And there's one wrinkle that we kind of added to every movie to kind of like change it up a little bit: this one is... a true Final Destination movie, but it doesn't follow that kind of formula that we've kind of established... I think I can say that much."

Announced back in January, the upcoming sixth Final Destination film will also feature contributions from producer Jon Watts, best known for his work on the Spider-Man trilogy over at Marvel Studios and Sony Pictures. Apart from Watts, Perry, Taylor, and Busick, no major names have been announced in connection to the project at this point, so Final Destination 6 remains a little wide open in terms of what we can expect. Now, thanks to Reddick, we know to expect something new.

Looking for more horror in the meantime? The Black Phone is in theaters now, and Jordan Peele's NOPE opens July 22 only in theaters. The new Stephen King adaptation Firestarter is streaming now on Peacock.