Mike Flanagan has likely been famous among horror fans since Oculus, an interesting take on horror that featured two actors that portray some favorited comic book adaptations in DC Comics and Marvel, Brenton Thwaites and Karen Gillan, Nightwing and Nebula, respectively. Since the movie Oculus, however, Mike Flanagan has dominated with original horror movies, series, and adaptations. Still, more recently, the modern horror pioneer has been on the grind specifically for Netflix. It has proven to be a perfect fit for the writer, director, and creator of many horror titles he’s been involved with, with some inspiration. Below, we’ve detailed Mike Flanagan, the modern horror genius, and more specifically, his anthology series for Netflix, The Haunting of Bly Manor and The Haunting of Hill House.
As stated above, Mike Flanagan had his career mostly recognized initially from Oculus. This horror movie featured a younger, unknown cast at the time and has since become well-recognized, but Mike Flanagan had his career grow as well. However, Oculus wasn’t simply a film Mike Flanagan created that got popular, as there was quite a process to getting the film created from a short film Mike Flanagan created earlier to showcase his abilities as a horror director. Eventually, Oculus became a feature film with a theatrical release after Absentia was an unexpected success for Flanagan as a $70,000 film shot in his apartment after a successful crowdfund. Still, it wasn’t long after that Mike Flanagan gained attention with more original work. From Oculus‘ theatrical release Mike Flanagan created Before I Wake in 2013 but with disputes up until 2015 with Relativity Media that kept pushing the film back due to countless issues with Relativity Media, and finally saw the light of day when Netflix acquired the film and released it in 2018. Since Before I Wake, Flanagan wrote and directed the prequel of Ouija, Ouija: Origin of Evil, released a secret passion project that was an intense and original horror film Hush, and Stephen King adaptations before he eventually got more Netflix recognition with The Haunting of Hill House and the rest of The Haunting anthology series. Besides The Haunting anthology series for Netflix, Mike Flanagan has also released Midnight Mass, The Midnight Club, and the upcoming The Fall of the House of Usher.
Mike Flanagan’s The Haunting of Hill House
Mike Flanagan and The Haunting anthology didn’t start as an anthology series. Still, as with most Netflix and other streaming series that are meant to be one-offs, the fans rallied together enough for anything to be possible. The first The Haunting series from Mike Flanagan was The Haunting of Hill House, and like the anthology season after, The Haunting of Hill House was based on a novel, this time the novel of the same name by Shirley Jackson. Mike Flanagan’s The Haunting of Hill House, although based on a novel from 1959, likely got more worldwide attention than the book, as well as due to the power of Netflix. Netflix has long been a home for exciting and original horror movies and series, but Mike Flanagan has dominated Netflix with projects before The Haunting anthology series. Much like most of Mike Flanagan’s work, the cast of The Haunting of Hill House featured some previous collaborators of his, and the second The Haunting anthology season featured the same general cast as the first, in different roles as the series aren’t connected.
The Haunting of Bly Manor
While the seasons of The Haunting of Bly Manor and The Haunting of Hill House have not been connected, outside of being Netflix anthology seasons from Mike Flanagan, the two different stories had the same general cast, as mentioned above. The cast that was present throughout both of Mike Flanagan’s The Haunting anthology seasons included Victoria Pedretti, Oliver Jackson-Cohen, Amelia Eve, T’Nia Miller, Rahul Kohli, Tahirah Sharif, Kate Siegel, Benjamin Evan Ainsworth, and others. Compared to The Haunting of Hill House, The Haunting of Bly Manor was dedicated to the overall career of writer Henry James, the writer of the 1898 novella The Haunting of Bly Manor was based on, The Turn of the Screw. Although The Haunting of Hill House was a more original but direct adaptation of the events from The Haunting of Hill House, The Haunting of Bly Manor dedicated different episode titles and more to Henry James on top of the overall novella adaptation for Netflix. Each episode of The Haunting of Bly Manor featured a title taken directly from a Henry James short story, with the final episode of the series, so far, taking its title from another Henry James novella, The Beast in the Jungle. The time between The Haunting of Hill House and The Haunting of Bly Manor was two years, which has been exceeded since October of 2022, so the third season of Mike Flanagan’s The Haunting anthology has no official word yet.
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