Of all the Exorcist movies to tie in with the current TV spin-off series, producers have perhaps picked the most off-the-wall choice.
Fox's adaptation, now called The Exorcist: The Next Chapter for its second season, exists within the larger universe of the movie franchise, but has told its own largely self-contained story… until now.
Speaking to Digital Spy at New York Comic-Con, showrunner Jeremy Slater revealed that his storyline for the second season will tie in directly with The Exorcist III.
"We've got a little bit of [crossover] this season," he told us. "We kind of hit 'Tubular Bells' [from the film series] and the head spin and the projectile vomit last year. We knew that there were certain things that the fans were gonna demand and expect to see.
"We still got a couple. This IS The Exorcist. There's always gonna be room for vomit on our show. We still have some fun moments like that.
"And it's important to me to get some stuff from Exorcist III in there this season at some point. Because I think it's a massively underrated sequel. I love that movie so much. So we're gonna try to get some Exorcist III nods in there somewhere. But you'll have to keep your eye out for them."
Who would have expected The Exorcist III, which disappointed at the box office in 1990, to have such an impact 27 years later?
That sequel was actually both written and directed by William Peter Blatty, the late author of the original Exorcist novel. In it, Lieutenant William F. Kinderman (George C. Scott) returned to investigate a series of murders with Satanist links.
Aside from linking more strongly to the film franchise, The Exorcist: The Next Chapter will be charting a new course with its second season, introducing a mostly-new cast and a new spectral haunting.
"In season one we had to prove that we had a reason to exist," Slater explained to us. "That we weren't just cynically taking the Exorcist title and slapping it on the show just to make money. That we had a real story worth telling and characters that we cared about.
"So the challenge for season two is some of that pressure's off. I feel like we've earned our spot at the table and now it's about not disappointing the fans, the people who are coming back and want more of these characters. They want new surprises. They want to see things that they didn't see last year.
"So we're trying very hard not to duplicate ourselves, and to tell a different kind of possession story this year. We have some twists and turns that hopefully the audience won't see coming, and really give the fans more out of what they wanted in season two.
"Really give them more of Marcus (Ben Daniels) and Tomas (Alfonso Herrera) together. Give them more horror set pieces. Spend more time with this family so you really become invested in these kids. We're trying to do it all."
The Exorcist: The Next Chapter airs on Fox on Friday nights in the US, and on Syfy in the UK.
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