Jason Blum and James Wan’s techno horror MEG3N about an AI doll will shoot in Auckland, New Zealand next year, confirmed Blumhouse Productions.
The project is being directed by New Zealander Gerard Johnstone, (Housebound) who also wrote the script alongside Akela Cooper (Luke Cage). Horror specialists Blum and Wan are producing, having previously worked together on the horror hit Insideous franchise.
MEG3N tells the story of a toy company roboticist who uses artificial intelligence to develop MEG3N, a life-like doll programmed to bond with her niece, but becomes too protective with terrifying results.
Blumhouse recently filmed their horror film Black Christmas in New Zealand, which is set for release by Universal Pictures in December. They enjoyed the experience so much they decided to return to the country.
“We are looking to shoot Meg3n in Auckland, which will double for the US,” Jeanette Volturno, head of physical production at Blumhouse, told KFTV. “We had a great experience with the kiwi crew on Black Christmas, and so decided to take another project there using local talent.”
The suburbs of Auckland will be made to look like “a Denver, Colorado type feel” for the MEG3N shoot, added Volturno. “There’s a science facility we’ll be at and a couple of other more generic spots that we could play as anywhere in America. It won’t be as complicated as Black Christmas, which specifically required snow and an East Coast college look. MEG3N is more homes, business, normal life.”
Michael Clear, of Wan’s Atomic Monster banner, will executive produce with Judson Scott overseeing for the company. Blumhouse’s Couper Samuelson will executive produce, while Ryan Turek will oversee the project.