Orphan: First Kill star Julia Stiles has been talking up the horror prequel, and in particular the reprisal of the role of Esther by actress Isabelle Fuhrman. While Fuhrman was only 12 years old when the first Orphan was made, time ticks on for us all and she is now 24, making a prequel about the small-statured serial killer a real challenge. Well, according to Stiles, the results are nothing short of breath-taking and left the star “floored”.
“The working title was Esther, which I really liked, which is the name of the girl. What’s remarkable is that Isabelle Fuhrman, who played the little girl in the original Orphan, now reprises her role as the same girl, same age, even though Isabelle’s older now. … But I just went and did ADR … and I was floored. Because they didn’t use CGI. The tricks that they did with the camera and different perspective tricks that they had, plus her costume and prosthetics and all that, she looks like a child. And her performance is stunning, because she embodies a child too in the way that she talks and the way she walks.”
Released in 2009, the first Orphan centers on a couple who, after the death of their unborn child, adopt a mysterious nine-year-old girl, Esther. As she demonstrates increasingly bizarre behavior, it is revealed during the movie’s climax that Esther is in fact an adult woman with hypopituitarism, a rare hormonal disorder that stunted her physical growth and caused proportional dwarfism.
It has been previously detailed that Isabelle Fuhrman will become Esther once again through a combination of make-up techniques and CGI, with the returning actress having revealed that the movie will use “forced perspective, camera angles, where we put the light” to transform the 24-year-old actress into a child-like monster for another violent adventure. Evidently, this approach, alongside a performance that Stiles describes as “stunning” has very successfully resurrected the Esther, allowing audiences to explore her early life.
Orphan: First Kill will center on Esther, who is now living under the name Leena Klammer. The horror begins when she orchestrates a brilliant escape from an Estonian psychiatric facility and travels to America by impersonating the missing daughter of a wealthy family. But Leena’s new life as ‘Esther’ comes with an unexpected wrinkle and pits her against a mother who will protect her family at any cost. Isabelle Fuhrman’s return after all these years is sure to be a major selling point for the prequel, and based on Stiles’ admiration, the methods used to achieve it should prove very exciting (and likely terrifying) for audiences to see.
While Stiles was not able to give much else away, she has teased a twist to rival that of the first movie saying, “I think fans of the first one will enjoy this one as well because there is a huge twist that I can’t give away, but it’s got all that crazy psychologically terrorizing stuff that the first one had.” Stiles has even compared the movie’s killer to that of such classic cinematic psychopaths as Psycho‘s Norman Bates. “Just this character that Isabelle plays, Esther or Leena or the multiple names that she has, it reminds me of why Norman Bates was so captivating,” Stiles continued. “It’s just a sociopath, but in this child. So it was very fun to work on, for someone who doesn’t watch horror movies.” Orphan: First Kill does not yet have a release date. This comes to us from Collider.