When your feature directorial debut is a movie like The Witch, there’s no doubt that, one, a ton of scripts are going to come your way and, two, that your follow-up project is going to be the talk of the town. Sure enough, roughly six months after The Witch premiered at Sundance and got snatched up by A24, news spread that Robert Eggers was attached to direct a remake of the F. W. Murnau classic Nosferatu.
With The Witch set to hit theaters on February 19th, I got the opportunity to talk to him about making the film and he also briefly indulged my curiosity regarding Nosferatu. As one might expect, a number of horror opportunities came his way after he snagged the Best Director prize at Sundance so when I asked him why the Nosferatu project made him think that should be next, he quickly corrected me and explained:
“Well, it’s actually not what I’m doing next. I think it seems very disgusting and presumptuous and megalomaniacal and offensive for someone in my position to say they want to do Nosferatu next, so I think that’s why it hit the trades in a big way. I still might do it, but not next. It’s a masterpiece and it really doesn’t objectively need to be done, but I’ve been obsessed with that film since I was a little kid. But, you know, Peter Jackson was obsessed with King Kong and we saw how that turned out. [Laughs]”
As reported by Movies.com, Eggers is planning to jump into a medieval knight epic next (presumably The Knight), so clearly Nosferatu isn’t happening anytime soon and Eggers doesn’t even know if it’ll happen at all, but as someone who’s very into the 1922 silent film and obsessed with trying to figure out how any filmmaker could possibly do a worthy remake, I opted to ask if he’d ever consider doing the remake as a silent film. Here’s what he said:
“When I was 17 I would have wanted to have done that. I don’t mean to be saying, ‘It’s an immature idea’ or something, but I think that I love silent film and I think in The Witch you can see that in some places, in the places where there’s no diegetic sound and it’s just music and image, and I get the power of that but I think that if you want to watch a silent film of Nosferatu, [F.W.] Murnau already made a great one.”
That’s all on the possible Nosferatu remake, but keep an eye on the site for my full chat with Eggers and Anya Taylor-Joy on The Witch coming soon.