Do you like your Ghostbusters a little on the darker, more serious side? If so, writer Ian Fried’s Spectral might be right up your ghost-bustin’ alley. Legendary Pictures has acquired the feature rights in a six-figure deal. Spectral, pitched as a darker version of Ghostbusters with a more serious tone, features a contemporary, militaristic approach to fighting supernatural creatures. When evil ghosts take over Manhattan, a special ops group is brought in to take them down. Fried is an up-and-coming writer who turned in a 2010 Black List screenplay, The Ever After Murders, which featured fairy tale characters investigating murder scenes. More recently, Fried received a lot of attention for his treatment of Gaslight, a serial-killing Gothic tale featuring Florence Nightingale and Jack the Ripper.
Though the script is set in Manhattan at present, Heat Vision’s report cautions that locations and details may change as writing progresses. The report also remarks on Fried’s unique presentation of his material. The writer put together a “rip reel” with clips of various movie scenes to simulate what the final tone, pacing and visual aesthetic should be. Looks like it did the trick.