'Death Note' First Teaser: Notebook Gives Its Owner the Power to Kill in Netflix Original Movie

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Adam Wingard may not yet be a household name, but over the past few years, he’s established himself as one of horror’s new directors to watch, thanks to 2011’s indie slasher You’re Next, 2014’s John Carpenter-esque thriller The Guest (starring Beauty and the Beast’s Dan Stevens), and last year’s stealth sequel Blair Witch. Thus, you’d expect his next venture to be an even bigger big-screen deal, which would be wrong — at least the “big-screen” part — since the filmmaker’s highly anticipated next movie primarily will be available to watch at home via Netflix.

Wingard’s Death Note, coming this summer and previewed in a brand-new trailer (watch it above), is an adaptation of a popular manga that was originally turned into a movie in Japan in 2006. Its story concerns a young man who comes to possess a notebook that has supernatural powers — it allows its owner to kill anyone, simply by writing the condemned’s name in its pages — and its teaser only hints at the madness to come.

(SPOILER ALERT!) Fans of its source material know that possession of the notebook compels the story’s main character to try to change the world for the better by ridding it of horrible people. As these things usually go, that plan is complicated by various factors, including a pesky cop and, well, the fact that such demonic power is usually difficult to control.

Speaking with Collider back in September, Wingard said about the project:

“We can do whatever we want. That was the cool thing about it, because it’s an anime film. So, technically, it’s a cartoon that you’re bringing to life. To me, the thing about anime is that it’s so adult-oriented. I remember going to Suncoast growing up and you see Akira there with the little “Not for Kids” sticker on it. That always made an impact on me. So, doing my first live-action anime thing, to me it was important that you have those adult themes. So, it’s got nudity, it’s got swearing, it’s got a ton of violence. Jason Eisener, who did Hobo with a Shotgun. I brought him on — I’m good friends with him — as second-unit director. There’s basically like three good Jason Eisener short films in there and they’re all very gory. I was able to just turn him loose sometime, and just do some crazy stuff.”

Boasting some seriously creepy imagery, the above teaser for Death Note adds more fuel to Netflix’s developing rep as a prime destination for top-notch genre tales. The promo for Wingard’s latest — which stars Nat Wolff, Margaret Qualley, LaKeith Stanfield, Paul Nakauchi, Shea Whigham, and the voice of Willem Dafoe — lands exclusively on the streaming platform on Aug. 25.

Adam Wingard’s ‘You’re Next’: Watch a trailer:


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