Sarah Paulson Joined the Cast of the Unbreakable Sequel, & It’s Difficult Not to Get My Hopes Up
— M. Night Shyamalan (@MNightShyamalan) July 24, 2017
Note: This article includes major SPOILERS for the movie Split.
Every time I think I’m done caring about M. Night Shyamalan, he drops some gigantic breadcrumb, making sure I’ll follow his career at least a little longer. The latest being that corporeal goddess Sarah Paulson has joined the cast of his upcoming movie, Glass.
I had mixed feelings about Shyamalan’s last movie, Split, which we learned in the last few moments–again, SPOILERS–was a secret Unbreakable sequel all along. It was the closest thing Shyamalan has had to a real return to form in years. James McAvoy’s portrayal of 24 different personalities is incredible. But it’s impossible to overlook the catastrophic clumsiness he displayed in dealing with issues of sexual assault. The sexual and emotional torture of teenage girls felt exploitative and designed to tantalize. When her history of sexual abuse ends up being what saves Anya Taylor-Joy’s Casey, it’s handled so hamfistedly as to read as a “wow, good things can come from rape, too!” morality tale. If you are not excited for a follow-up, no one here will blame you in the slightest.
So why am I? To start, Unbreakable is one of my absolute favorite movies, though much of that may be nostalgia over the role it played in the development of my young self’s film aesthetic. It was the first DVD I ever bought. I’m finding it difficult to let go of that attachment, even though I found the tie-in at the end of Split to be wholly unnecessary.
Also, again, did I mention Sarah Paulson?
I will watch her in anything, and she elevates the quality of anything she’s in.
Next, lacking any details about the new movie (other than that McAvoy and Taylor-Joy are both returning), a look through Shyamalan’s Twitter feed is intriguing. To start:
— M. Night Shyamalan (@MNightShyamalan) June 24, 2017
That’s one hell of an encouraging list of influences.
This tweet also caught my attention:
Writing draft 4 of #Glass. Had many epiphanies about where I showed disdain for characters by not asking who they were outside of this plot.
— M. Night Shyamalan (@MNightShyamalan) June 25, 2017
I don’t want to project too much growth onto a vague tweet, but there are a number of characters from Unbreakable and Split that this could apply to, and if Shyamalan is open to recognizing the ways he should have done better by his (mostly female) characters, I’m interested to see what he does with that.
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