Indonesian director Joko Anwar has shed light on sequel plans for his popular Pengabdi Setan (Satan’s Slaves) horror movie series.
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In a new interview with NME, the director shared that he already had a wider cinematic universe in mind even before shooting began on the first instalment in the series, adding that he had been waiting to see if it would be a commercial success before revealing his plans.
Hinting at a bigger picture that is “more than just a story about a family being terrorised by a cult,” Anwar revealed: “Same thing with the third one I’m planning: I wanted to wait to see if Communion was well-received first. Thankfully the second one was even more successful, almost doubling the gross of the first one. In this case, it’s easier because we already had the full story planned from beginning to end. So far, you have not even seen a tenth of the story yet.”
Anwar also revealed that the third movie will feature a departure from his award-winning formula for the series, sharing: “The third Satan’s Slaves movie will venture beyond the haunted house subgenre. I know it’s a challenge because people are already accustomed to the enclosed environments. But the third movie will grow and evolve into something else.”
Pengabdi Setan 2: Communion set the opening day record for 2022 in Indonesia after drawing 701,891 moviegoers on its opening day on August 4. Pengabdi Setan 2‘s performance at the box office also makes it the second biggest opening day weekend ever in Indonesia, just behind the 2019 romance film Dilan 1991.
The first instalment of Pengabdi Setan was released in 2017, and was both a critical and box office success. A loose remake of 1980 Indonesian horror film by Sisworo Gautama Putra, the first movie was watched by more than 4.2 million viewers and collected a box office total of $10.5million – making it the highest-grossing domestic Indonesian film of 2017.