Barry Levinson’s Viral-Eco-Horror Emerges From The Bay

When you hear the name Barry Levinson your thoughts don’t immediately leap to science fiction. Sure, he made “Sphere”, but he is most known for touching dramatic comedies like “Diner”, “Rain Man”, and “Good Morning, Vietnam”. But that hasn’t stopped the circulation of rumors about a Levinson directed sci-fi/horror movie called “Isopod”. (Isopods are creepy, monster-looking crustaceans related to shrimp and crabs, and they live deep in the ocean, which automatically makes them even creepier.)

The film has been renamed “The Bay”, which might be a more appropriate title considering that the plot

features the aftermath of a viral outbreak on the Eastern Seaboard. The story is told via a series of recordings on camera phones, 911 calls, and other scraps of video as the town of Claridge, Maryland, is engulfed by chaos.

So far there isn’t any mention of frightening, many-legged creatures emerging from the depths of the ocean, which makes me curious how the original title figures in. For my money I would much rather watch that movie than a shaky, jittery, shot-on-some-guy’s-cell-phone account of an epidemic. I hope there are monsters.

Oren Peli, Steven Schneider, and Brian Kavanaugh Jones, the team behind “Paranormal Activity”, is producing the film with Jason Blum. Coupled with the revelation that how the story will be filmed, this might lead you to wonder if this will be another “Blair Witch”, ”Cloverfield”, “found” footage kind of deal. The distribution rights are going to be up for bid during the Toronto Film Festival, so more news will likely be on the way soon.