Make Flanagan teases The Haunting of Bly Manor.
The Haunting of Hill House
Credit: Netflix

Was Netflix’s The Haunting of Hill House TV show a little too scary for you? Then you might have mixed feelings about what series creator Mike Flanagan has to say about its follow-up, The Haunting of Bly Manor, which is expected to premiere next year.

“It’s scarier,” says Flanagan. “It’s a lot more frightening, just on a visceral level.”

Where The Haunting of Hill House reimagined Shirley Jackson’s 1959 novel of the same name, The Haunting of Bly Manor is inspired by the works of The Turn of the Screw author Henry James.

“It’s going great,” says Flanagan. “We’re about a third of the way through. It’s such a treat to play in the world of Henry James. It’s a whole different vibe from Shirley Jackson. Turn of the Screw is kind of the backbone of the season. But that’s been adapted so many times, and so well, like in the case of the The Innocents and others. There’s a new adaptation coming out in like a few weeks. You can skip rocks off of The Turn of the Screw. So, we were able to open up his entire library of ghost stories, stuff that’s never been adapted, and build the whole season out with the entirety of Henry James’ supernatural library. And that has been a real treat, because we really get to do things that I’ve never gotten to see before. Turn of the Screw is really just our way in.”

Flanagan also explains that while Haunting of Hill House cast members will appear on the show, there is no direct dramatic link between the The Haunting of Bly Manor and its predecessor.

“There’s not a narrative connection, but there are little Easter eggs, for sure, not only in small details but in moments of dialogue and in some of the ideas from Hill House,” he says. “There are definitely going to be things that will set off that little dopamine rush that those kind of connections create. But it’s not a direct connection from a story point of view.”

Flanagan’s latest film as a director, Doctor Sleep, is released this Friday.

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