M. Night Shyamalan Responds To Fan Concerns Trap’s Big Twist Was Already Spoiled

 Josh Hartnett's spine tingling portrayal of a serial killer in Trap.
Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures

M. Night Shyamalan is known for his big movie twists like we’ve seen in The Sixth Sense, The Village, The Visit, and more. However, fans are worried that the twist for Shyamalan’s latest movie Trap already spoiled a major twist in revealing that the serial killer the police are trying to catch is the lead character played by Josh Hartnett. With fans concerned that the upcoming thriller movie’s big twist was already spoiled, the Indian film director addresses those concerns.

The first trailer of Trap showed a father and daughter at a crowded concert that a serial killer is attending with a major twist. And no, it’s not the twist-y Easter egg of M. Night Shyamalan’s daughter’s movie The Watchers poster making a cameo. It’s that Josh Hartnett’s character is the serial killer the police have orchestrated a trap for at the venue. With a Shyamalan twist always to be expected in his films, fans are worried about already being spoiled by the trailer’s big reveal. The Sixth Sense director addressed those concerns to Empire and I think you’ll be intrigued by what he has to say:

The response [to the trailer] was so amazing. [As to whether the big twist has been spoiled] Who can say? But I did know that that was how I was going to sell it when we were shooting. The story already starts months before you come into the movie theatre. As a storyteller, I have to be a part of that. I was very careful.

It’s true that it’s hard to market the plot of Trap without revealing Josh Hartnett’s character is the sought-after serial killer. The plot itself is a twist. Just like how in Mel Gibson’s Flight Risk trailer, it’s revealed that the pilot flying a private plane with a fugitive as a passenger is actually a hitman assigned to kill that passenger. With plots like these, it’s hard to keep them under wraps if you want audiences to know what a movie is about.

With M. Night Shyamalan saying he was “very careful” when marketing this movie, maybe that could mean there’s more going on with the plot than we know. After all, we can try and guess the big Trap twist with a number of imaginable theories. For example, maybe there are more people behind the serial killer’s capture than we know, like the daughter or the singer being in on it. Maybe the serial killer will get away with it or in a split second, he doesn’t? Or maybe none of this is really happening and it’s just virtual reality like what you’d find in a Black Mirror episode?

I still think there are more twists that Shyamalan has prepared for us than we realize. It’s just like how in The Sixth Sense, we thought the big twist was just that a young child could see dead people only to find out there was much more going on than that.

When M. Night Shyamalan first pitched Trap to studios, it simply followed- “What if The Silence Of The Lambs happened at a Taylor Swift concert?” With a twisted film idea like that, it just might work! The inspiration for the psychological thriller came from a wild real-life event called “Operation Flagship.” In 1985, several fugitives were given free NFL tickets and a chance to win an all-expenses-paid trip to the Super Bowl. Surprisingly, the tables turned on the fugitive attendees who saw only about 100 attendees were there with cops disguising themselves as cheerleaders and mascots for a sting operation. Sounds like a cool movie, right? Shyamalan seemed to think so in its “very scary and Hitchcockian” tone.

Fans may be worried that the big M. Night Shyamalan’s twist was already revealed in Trap’s trailer. But, the Oscar-nominated director gave a very vague reassurance that the twist may or may not have been spoiled and how “careful” he was telling this story. Hopefully, the “twist” of Josh Hartnett’s character being a serial killer is just the red herring to what’s really going on in the film’s high-tension plot and that we’ll still be in for a wild ride. We’ll only know for sure once the 2024 movie release comes to theaters on August 2nd.