Candyman (2021 film)

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Candyman (2020 film).png
Teaser poster with September 2020 release date
Directed byNia DaCosta
Produced by
Screenplay by
  • Jordan Peele
  • Win Rosenfeld
  • Nia DaCosta
Based on
Music byRobert A. A. Lowe
CinematographyJohn Guleserian
Edited byCatrin Hedström
Distributed byUniversal Pictures
Release date
  • August 27, 2021 (2021-08-27)
CountryUnited States

Candyman is an upcoming American supernatural slasher film directed by Nia DaCosta and written by Jordan Peele, Win Rosenfeld and DaCosta. It is a direct sequel to the 1992 film of the same name and the fourth film in the Candyman film series, based on the short story "The Forbidden" by Clive Barker. The film stars Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, Teyonah Parris, Nathan Stewart-Jarrett and Colman Domingo, along with Tony Todd and Vanessa Estelle Williams reprising their roles from the original film.

Candyman is scheduled to be theatrically released in the United States on August 27, 2021 by Universal Pictures. Its release date was delayed three times from an original June 2020 date due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[1]


For as long as the residents can remember, the housing projects of Chicago's Cabrini Green neighborhood were terrorized by a word-of-mouth ghost story about a supernatural killer with a hook for a hand, easily summoned by those daring to repeat his name five times into a mirror. In the present day, a decade after the last of the Cabrini towers were torn down, a visual artist named Anthony McCoy and his girlfriend, an art gallery director named Brianna Cartwright, moved into a luxurious loft condo in Cabrini, now gentrified beyond recognition and inhabited by the upwardly mobile millennials. With Anthony's painting career on the brink of stalling, a chance encounter with a Cabrini Green old-timer exposes Anthony to the tragically horrific nature of the true story behind the Candyman. Anxious to maintain his status in the Chicago art world, Anthony begins to explore these macabre details in his studio as fresh grist for paintings, unknowingly opening a door to a complex past that unravels his own sanity and unleashes a terrifyingly viral wave of violence that puts him on a collision course with destiny.[2]


  • Yahya Abdul-Mateen II as Anthony McCoy, a visual artist who lived in the defunct Cabrini Green Housing Projects as an infant that was known to be haunted by an alleged urban myth called the Candyman over twenty-eight years ago. He was kidnapped by the Candyman and almost killed but was saved by Helen Lyle.
    • Abdul-Mateen II also portrays a hallucinatory reflection of the Candyman.
  • Teyonah Parris as Brianna Cartwright, Anthony's girlfriend and an art gallery director.
    • Hannah Love Jones as Young Brianna.
  • Nathan Stewart-Jarrett as Troy Cartwright, Brianna's brother.
  • Colman Domingo as William Burke, a Cabrini Green resident who tells Anthony about the Candyman legend.
  • Tony Todd as Daniel Robitaille / Candyman, a vengeful spirit that kills anyone who summons him by saying his name five times while facing a mirror.
  • Vanessa Estelle Williams as Anne-Marie McCoy, Anthony's mother who believed in the Candyman urban legend while living in Cabrini Green. Years ago, she shared her experience of fearing him to Helen Lyle, who investigated the myth to support her thesis paper on urban legends.
  • Rebecca Spence as Finley Stephens
  • Cassie Kramer as Helen Lyle,[3] the reincarnation of the Candyman's lover, Caroline Sullivan who was able to defeat the Candyman after sacrificing herself to save Anthony when he was a baby years ago. However, she became a vengeful spirit herself who kills anyone who summons her by her first name five times while facing a mirror. The character was previously portrayed by Virginia Madsen in the first film.
  • Kyle Kaminsky as Grady Smith
  • Christiana Clark as Danielle Harrington
  • Brian King as Clive Privler
  • Torrey Hanson as Jack Hyde
  • Carl Clemons-Hopkins as Jameson
  • Cedric Mays as Gil Cartwright
  • Nancy Pender as TV News Anchor
  • Pam Jones as Devlin Sharpe
  • Breanna Lind as Annika


In September 2018, it was announced that Jordan Peele was in talks to produce a sequel of the 1992 film through his Monkeypaw Productions.[4] In a 2018 interview with Nightmare on Film Street, Todd stated, "I'd rather have him do it, someone with intelligence who's going to be thoughtful and dig into the whole racial makeup of who the Candyman is and why he existed in the first place."[5] In November 2018, it was confirmed that Peele would produce the film with Universal and MGM and will partner with Win Rosenfeld to co-produce the film while Nia DaCosta signed on as director.[6] The film will serve as a "spiritual sequel", taking place back in the new gentrified Cabrini Green where the old housing projects development once stood in Chicago. MGM's Jonathan Glickman stated that "the story will not only pay reverence to Clive Barker's haunting and brilliant source material" but "will bring in a new generation of fans."[7] The filming was due to commence in early 2019.[8]

In January 2019, it was reported that Lakeith Stanfield of FX's Atlanta and Sorry to Bother You fame would possibly star in the film, but not as the main titular character rather as an older version of Anthony McCoy who was a visual artist who takes on an interest seeking the legend of the Candyman that was similar to Helen Lyle's character played by Virginia Madsen. At the time, there was no word as to who would be starring in the film and if Todd or any past cast would reprise their roles.[9][10] However, in an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Todd spoke about Peele, stating: "I know that he's a fan. I'm hoping that I will appear in the film in some form of fashion. Wouldn't that make sense? But, it's Hollywood so I won't take it personally if it doesn't work out." He added, "If this new one is successful, it will shed light back on the original. I think that the subject matter is more important than any individuals and I mean that."[11] In February 2019, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II was in talks to play McCoy, misreported as being in talks to portray the titular character.[12] In response to the news, Todd offered his blessings over Twitter, stating: "Cheers to the Candyman, a wonderful character that I lived with for 25 years. He's brought grace and glory and a beautiful boatload of friends & family. I'm honored that the spirit of Daniel Robitaille & Cabrini Green rises again. Truth to power! Blessings to the cast & crew".[13] However, it was ultimately announced that Todd would reprise his role.[14]

If Beale Street Could Talk actress Teyonah Parris was cast opposite Abdul-Mateen II's character as Anthony's girlfriend, Brianna Cartwright.[14]

The principal photography for Candyman began in early August 2019 and wrapped up in September 2019 (25-27) in the Chicago area,[15] with some filming taking place in the North Park neighborhood during the month of September.[16][17] The working title of the film was revealed on some of the cast and crew social media pages as Say My Name which was discreetly used in the revised scripts and production sets to keep things "flying under the radar".[18]


On March 3, 2020, Robert A. A. Lowe was announced as the composer for the film.[19]


Candyman was originally scheduled to release on June 12, 2020, by Universal Pictures, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it was pushed to September 25, 2020,[20] and then again to October 16, 2020, taking the previous release date of Halloween Kills.[21] The film was then delayed to August 27, 2021.[22] An independent shadow puppetry short film/trailer presented by Nia DaCosta with creative visual work by Manual Cinema was released on June 17, 2020.[23][24]


  1. ^ Hughes, William. "Nia DaCosta's Candyman delayed until 2021". A.V. Club. Retrieved September 12, 2020.
  2. ^ "Candyman (2020)". Universal Pictures. Retrieved April 1, 2020.
  3. ^ Miska, Brad (January 15, 2020). "Helen Lyle Returns in This Year's 'Candyman'! [Exclusive]". Bloody Disgusting!. Retrieved January 21, 2021.
  4. ^ Miska, Brad. "Jordan Peele in Talks to Remake Clive Barker's 'Candyman' [Exclusive]". Bloody Disgusting!. Retrieved October 3, 2018.
  5. ^ "[Exclusive Interview] Horror Icon Tony Todd Talks HELL FEST and Gives His Blessing To CANDYMAN Remake | Nightmare on Film Street - Horror Movie Podcast, News and Reviews". Nightmare on Film Street - Horror Movie Podcast, News and Reviews. September 26, 2018. Retrieved October 3, 2018.
  6. ^ "Jordan Peele-Produced 'Candyman' Reboot Taps Director Nia DaCosta". Variety. November 27, 2018. Retrieved November 27, 2018.
  7. ^ "Jordan Peele to co-write sequel to horror film 'Candyman'". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved August 23, 2020.
  8. ^ "Jordan Peele to co-write sequel to horror film 'Candyman'". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved November 30, 2018.
  9. ^ "Lakeith Stanfield Is Reportedly Being Eyed To Star In 'Candyman' Reboot From Jordan Peele And Nia DaCosta". Retrieved January 30, 2019.
  10. ^ Miss2Bees (January 29, 2019). "Lakeith Stanfield May be Casted for 'Candyman' Reboot". The Source. Retrieved January 30, 2019.
  11. ^ "'Candyman' star Tony Todd hasn't spoken with Jordan Peele about appearing in sequel". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved January 31, 2019.
  12. ^ Kroll, Justin. "Jordan Peele's 'Candyman' Finds Its Star (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved February 27, 2019.
  13. ^ Squires, John (February 27, 2019). "Tony Todd Gracefully Offers His Blessings to the New 'Candyman'". Bloody Disgusting!. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  14. ^ a b Squires, John (March 25, 2019). "'Candyman' Director Nia DaCosta Clarifies That Yahya Abdul-Mateen II is Not Replacing Tony Todd…?". Bloody Disgusting!. Retrieved April 2, 2019.
  15. ^ Squires, John (August 22, 2019). "Filming Has Begun on Nia DaCosta's 'Candyman'; Here's the Latest Casting News". Bloody Disgusting!. Retrieved October 24, 2019.
  16. ^ "Candyman: Everything We Know (So Far) About Jordan Peele's Reboot". ScreenRant. October 14, 2019. Retrieved October 24, 2019.
  17. ^ "Jordan Peele's 'Candyman' Sequel is Filming in Chicago". NBC Chicago. Retrieved October 24, 2019.
  18. ^ "Jordan Peele's 'Candyman' Sequel Is Now Filming In North Park". Block Club Chicago. Retrieved October 5, 2019.
  19. ^ "Robert A. A. Lowe to Score Nia DaCosta's Candyman Sequel". Film Music Reporter. Retrieved January 30, 2021.
  20. ^ "Universal Moves 'Candyman' to September Theatrical Release". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved May 10, 2020.
  21. ^ D’Alessandro, Anthony (July 8, 2020). "Blumhouse & Universal Move 'Halloween Kills', 'Forever Purge' & More To Later Release Dates". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved July 8, 2020.
  22. ^ Couch, Aaron (October 21, 2020). "Universal's 'Candyman' Finds 2021 Release Date". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved October 27, 2020.
  23. ^ Mendelson, Scott. "Stunning 'Candyman' Trailer Is A Perfect Example Of Spoiler-Free Marketing". Forbes. Retrieved June 18, 2020.
  24. ^ Torres, Libby. "A haunting new trailer for the horror movie 'Candyman' appears to highlight real cases of racial injustice". Insider. Retrieved June 18, 2020.

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