Ed Gass-Donnelly Helms “Last Exorcism 2”

Ed Gass-Donnelly (“This Beautiful City,” “Small Town Murder Songs”) has been hired to direct the R-rated follow-up to the 2010 horror/thriller hit “The Last Exorcism” for Arcade Pictures, Strike Entertainment and Studiocanal says Deadline.

Ashley Bell starred in the $1.5 million-budgeted PG-13 original film which ended up grossing $70 million worldwide. That story centered on a charlatan exorcist facing a crisis of conscience who invites a documentary crew on his final exorcism where he comes across the possessed Nell (Bell).

The sequel will pick up three months after that film left off, although further story details are being kept under wraps. Damien Chazelle penned the script.

Producer Eli Roth says “we want to go deeper and darker this time. The first film worked great as a PG-13 psychological film, but now we want to go R-rated and show the true horror of what this subject matter offers”. Shooting kicks off next month in New Orleans.