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I have said it once, I have said it twice, and I will say it again: Mike Flanagan is not only one of the best horror auteurs working today, but one of the greatest storytellers of his generation, if you ask me. For that reason, among others, I am very much looking forward to seeing what heart wrenching thrills and heartbreaking twists the Doctor Sleep director has in store for his latest limited series, following the success of The Haunting of Hill House and The Haunting of Bly Manor. As we wait, let us review what we already know so far about the upcoming Midnight Mass Netflix TV show, starting with the number of chapters we have to expect.
Midnight Mass, Consisting Of Seven Episodes, Will Premiere On Netflix
Mike Flanagan has had a particularly successful partnership with Netflix, to say the least, dating back to when the platform acquired exclusive streaming rights to his unique home invasion masterpiece Hush in 2016. After the 2017 release of his first Stephen King adaptation, the disturbing Gerald’s Game, this union arguably hit its peak the following year with the frightening miniseries The Haunting of Hill House (one of the best shows on Netflix) and its 2020 follow-up, The Haunting of Bly Manor - the first of which was told in 10 parts, and the second in nine. A total of only seven episodes make up Flanagan’s latest Netflix original limited series, Midnight Mass, which currently has no set release date.
Midnight Mass Is Created, Written, And Directed By Mike Flanagan
While Mike Flanagan directed all 10 episodes of The Haunting of Hill House, he only directed the first of The Haunting of Bly Manor’s nine chapters due to this commitment to Doctor Sleep - his acclaimed sequel to Stephen King’s The Shining from 2019. According to Deadline, in addition to creating Midnight Mass, the filmmaker is assuming full directorial duties for all seven episodes, as well as executive producing with series co-writer Jeff Howard and long-time producing partner Trevor Macy. Flanagan is also sharing screenwriting credits on some episodes with producer Elan Gale, horror filmmaker Dani Parker, and his sibling and frequent collaborator, James Flanagan.
Despite Rumors, Midnight Mass Is A Separate Story From The Haunting Of Bly Manor
Apparently, the story that Mike Flanagan and co. are crafting for Midnight Mass is all coming from their own imaginations and not a pre-existing work of literature. This marks a departure from both The Haunting of Hill House, which was loosely based on the classic 1959 novel of the same name by Shirley Jackson, and The Haunting of Bly Manor, which was one of two adaptations of Henry James’ The Turning of the Screw (along with the theatrically released The Turning) seen in 2020. There was some speculation, however, that Midnight Mass might be a continuation of the latter series (also inspired by other works from James) which Mike Flanagan personally shot down in a tweet from January 2021.
Quite frankly, I like the idea of Mike Flanagan returning to developing his own material for this new series. Besides, he already has another book adaptation for Netflix in the works called The Midnight Club, inspired by the young adult novel by Christopher Pike.
Midnight Mass Takes Place On An Isolated Island
You know, Midnight Mass is the name of a book by Kate Siegel’s character from Hush, that also shows up in Gerald's Game - which I understand does not actually help it qualify as a real work of literature. However, if it was inspired by pre-existing material, we may have more insight into what to expect from the story. According to what Netflix has released regarding plot details, the series follows the citizens of a quaint island who begin to encounter a number of unusual circumstances - some good and some not so good - following a young, charismatic priest’s mysterious arrival in the isolated community. By expanding the horrors from just a singular cursed house to an entire island, Mike Flanagan seems to have promised us his biggest - and possibly scariest - limited series on Netflix yet.
Henry Thomas And More Haunting Vets Are In The Midnight Mass Cast
Despite being a departure from The Haunting of Hill House and The Haunting of Bly Manor in story and environmental scope, the Midnight Mass cast will feature a number of familiar faces from those previous series. Henry Thomas, a frequent collaborator of Mike Flanagan’s since 2016’s Ouija: Origin of Evil, will appear along with his Bly Manor co-stars Rahul Kohli, Alex Essoe, and Kate Siegel (Flanagan’s real-life wife) as well as fellow Hill House vets Annabeth Gish, Robert Longstreet, and Samantha Sloyan. Among the cast members who are new to Flanagan’s collection of Netflix series include Hamish Linklater of FX’s Legion fame, Zach Gilford, Crystal Balint, Rahul Abburi, Matt Biedel, and Hush actor Michael Trucco.
Midnight Mass Was Shot In Vancouver Between August And December 2020
It was in July 2019 when Netflix announced it had ordered Midnight Mass to series, as part of its multi-year deal with Intrepid Pictures - Mike Flanagan and Trevor Macy’s production company. Filming in Vancouver, Canada, was initially meant to begin in March 2020 before the outbreak of the pandemic forced the shoot to be postponed until August 17, which Flanagan confirmed in a tweet he posted that day which read "Day 1… here we go." The director also took to Twitter to announce that principal photography on the series had wrapped later that year, on December 16, citing the project as "the best production experience of my career."
Well, you rarely hear such high praise for a series, and so early, even if it is coming from the show’s creator. Honestly, though, I am perfectly willing to put my trust in Mike Flanagan’s judgment as the man still has yet to let me down. Here is hoping that Midnight Mass is the latest miracle from the creator of 2014’s Oculus and the masterful, underrated 2011 thriller, Absentia, that we are waiting for.