In July 2021, Universal Pictures and Blumhouse Productions announced some ambitious franchise plans. Following a successful collaboration with the recent trilogy of Halloween movies, the studios announced that they were making three new features in the canon of The Exorcist. David Gordon Green was hired to helm the first feature, with the idea that he would then execute a macro vision… but things didn’t go exactly as planned. The Exorcist: Believer was panned by critics prior to its arrival in theaters, and the film underperformed at the box office.

Despite that disappointment, Universal and Blumhouse are charging forward with more Exorcist movies, the former having spent $400 million for the rights to the iconic horror franchise. Following The Exorcist: Believer, The Exorcist: Deceiver is now in the works, and I’ve put together this feature to collect all of the information that we know about the project so far.

What Is The Exorcist: Deceiver Release Date

Olivia O’Neill possessed in The Exorcist: Believer

(Image credit: Universal Pictures)

In January 2024, it was reported by Entertainment Weekly that while The Exorcist: Deceiver is still in development, the project is no longer targeting a spring 2025 release date and is not on the release calendar

Going into the release of The Exorcist: Believer in October 2023, Universal and Blumhouse had an optimistic schedule in mind. The hope was that the film’s ending would leave audiences desperately begging for another chapter, and the studios were anticipating a quick 18 month turnaround for a sequel. The Hollywood Reporter noted that an April 18, 2025 release date was carved out for Deceiver on the release calendar … but that’s no longer happening.

We’ll update this space when distribution plans for the feature become clearer.

David Gordon Green Is No Longer Directing The Exorcist: Deceiver

David Gordon Green and Ellen Burstyn in The Exorcist: Believer

(Image credit: Universal Pictures)

There is a key reason why The Exorcist: Deceiver won’t be made in time to hit its originally targeted release date: the film no longer has a director attached. Just as David Gordon Green directed 2018’s Halloween, Halloween Kills and Halloween Ends, there was an early expectation that the filmmaker would direct a full trilogy of Exorcist titles, but that plan fell apart in early 2024.

It was in the same report about shifting release date plans that it was announced David Gordon Green would no longer be directing Deceiver. It is not clear if he will still have creative input into the future direction of the series or if he will even still be a producer. The Hollywood Reporter says that he is shifting his focus to the upcoming comedy, Nutcrackers, starring Ben Stiller and Linda Cardellini. He is also a key creative on the HBO series, The Righteous Gemstones – credited as a producer and directing nine episodes thus far in the show’s three season run.

The Search Is On For A New Director

Olivia O’Neill possessed in church in The Exorcist: Believer

(Image credit: Universal Pictures)

It doesn’t look great when a franchise sequel has neither a director attached nor a set sequel, but Universal and Blumhouse aren’t giving up on their massive investment in the franchise. The Exorcist: Deceiver is without a captain steering the ship right now, but the search is on to find a replacement for David Gordon Green.

Given that we are presently living in a golden period for the horror genre, there are a lot of exciting options to choose from – and it would be wonderful to see the sequel be put in the hands of an up-and-coming talent (a la the last two Scream movies being made by the filmmaking team Radio Silence, and David Bruckner making the most recent installment of Hellraiser). That being said, it would be understandable for filmmakers to be a bit reticent about making The Exorcist: Deceiver after the reception of Believer. The big choice made here could save or sink the franchise.

It’s Unclear How The Exorcist: Deceiver Will Connect To The Story From The Exorcist: Believer

Exorcism finale in The Exorcist: Believer

(Image credit: Universal Pictures)

Amid all of the shakeups behind the scenes with The Exorcist: Deceiver, the franchise has one particularly good thing working in its favor: despite the fact that The Exorcist: Believer was made with the intention of it launching a new trilogy, it’s not a film that is riddled with loose ends and arcs that need to be further satisfied. It centers on a specific case of demonic possession, and while the ending is far from happy, the demon is banished in the third act. There is even closure for the complicated relationship between Chris MacNeil (Ellen Burstyn) and her daughter, Regan (Linda Blair).

There remains the possibility that The Exorcist: Deceiver will continue the story of one of the established characters, but there exists the option for the sequel to operate with a clean slate and tell its own story within the franchise canon. We’ll have to wait and see which direction is ultimately chosen.

The Exorcist: Deceiver Doesn’t Presently Have Any Actors Attached To Star

Olivia O’Neill possessed in The Exorcist: Believer

(Image credit: Universal Pictures)

Because we don’t yet know about how Believer and Deceiver will be related (let alone how the sequel will connect back to William Friedkin’s original film from 1973), information about the cast is presently non-existent. As far as we know, none of the actors from the 2023 movie have specific deals to return in a follow-up, so we’ll have to wait and see what happens.

In addition to the aforementioned Ellen Burstyn, the talented cast of The Exorcist: Believer also includes Leslie Odom Jr., Lidya Jewett, Olivia O’Neill, Jennifer Nettles, Norbert Leo Butz, and Ann Dowd.

While We Wait For The Sequel, The Exorcist: Believer Is Available To Stream On Peacock

Lidya Jewett possessed in The Exorcist: Believer

(Image credit: Universal Pictures)

If you either A) haven’t yet seen The Exorcist: Believer and want to formulate your own opinion about it in advance of The Exorcist: Deceiver, or B) have an interest in reevaluating the 2023 film via a repeat viewing, there is good news: the movie is very accessible. Physical media fans can pick up a copy of The Exorcist: Believer on 4K UHD or Blu-ray, and it’s also currently available to stream if you have a Peacock subscription.

I’ll continue to update this feature as we get closer and closer to the release of The Exorcist: Deceiver, and stay tuned here on CinemaBlend for our news and feature coverage of major developments. To learn about all of the scary films that are on the horizon, check out our upcoming horror movies guide.

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