Following a successful midnight screening at South By South West, Lionsgate has acquired the rights for Exists – a found footage thriller about the search for Bigfoot – according to Variety. Exists is the latest film from Eduardo Sanchez, the director who popularized the found footage genre with the groundbreaking Blair Witch Project.
Exists takes a new spin on the Bigfoot myth, following a group of friends who attempt to fight off the mythic beast while on a camping trip in rural Texas. Sanchez has been making a slow return to the found footage format. His last feature, the decidedly mediocre Lovely Molly combined found footage with conventional narrative filmmaking, and he used the format to fun effect in his V/H/S/2 segment A Ride in the Park.
If SXSW reaction is any indication, Exists represents a return to form, utilizing the found footage format to create a horrific sense of realism. Sanchez’s first film, The Blair Witch Project, is still the highest grossing found footage film, but his subsequent films have been relegated to unceremonious limited theatrical and DVD releases. Hopefully Lionsgate has plans to distribute this on a larger scale.