James Wan and Jason Blum, Powerhouse Team-Up Behind ‘M3gan,’ are Back with ‘Night Swim,’ Now Showing in Cinemas

Wyatt Russell in Night Swim /Photo Credit: Universal Pictures International

In 2014, director Bryce McGuire made Night Swim, an acclaimed five-minute short shot in the backyard of Grammy-winning musician Michelle Branch and featuring actress Megalyn Echikunwoke (Fox’s Almost Family) as a young woman who goes missing in her own pool when an evening swim leads to a close encounter with something creepy.

The short made a splash on YouTube and among its many fans was Judson Scott, executive vice president at Atomic Monster, who then recommended the short to Atomic Monster founder and horror master James Wan. “It was abundantly clear from watching the short that Bryce was a gifted filmmaker with a command of craft and tone,” Wan, co-producer for Night Swim the movie, says. “The story it told was so mysterious and evocative, and Bryce had a compelling vision for how it could be turned into something bigger, stranger and scarier while also being emotionally resonant.”

Says Jason Blum, whose fan favorite Blumhouse Productions produced the film, “What I liked about Bryce’s script was how it fleshed out the premise of a ‘spooky swimming pool’ in a credible, relatable, emotional way that felt contemporary and relatable yet classical at the same time.” Blum co-produced the film with Wan, a similar team-up they did for the blockbuster smash M3GAN (2022).

Night Swim takes the most banal pleasure of suburban life and transforms it into a wellspring of demonic evil in a movie that combines the style, impishness and wicked world-building that audiences have come to expect from horror film powerhouses Jason Blum and James Wan, with the eerie vibes and emotional resonance of classic eighties-era chillers like Poltergeist and Pet Sematary.

Why the pool?

Kerry Condon in Night Swim / Photo Credit: Universal Pictures International

“The pool represents status, diversion, fun,” director McGuire says. “It’s sexy; it’s seductive, and that’s what makes it deadly. The colors are rich and vibrant; the cool glowing turquoise water invites us like a siren call. But in the water, when the lights go out, it feels big. I also loved the idea of tapping into the universal memories we all have with the pool from our childhoods – reaching into the drain flap, skimming out dead bugs from the surface, getting your leg caught in the pool cleaner tube, playing Marco Polo – and turning these memories into unique scares. I would always say on set, ‘I want to smell the chlorine.’ I hope people smell the chlorine when they watch this movie on a big screen.”

Night Swim, produced by horror powerhouses James Wan and Jason Blum and distributed by Universal Pictures International, is now showing in cinemas. #NightSwimMovie

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