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Netflix’s ‘The Haunting of Hill House’ originally had different ending



the haunting of hill houseNetflix

  • Netflix’s “The Haunting of Hill House” is a dramatic horror
    series throughout its first season, but it ends on a hopeful
    note. That wasn’t always the case.
  • Director Mike Flanagan told The Hollywood Reporter that the
    season finale was originally going to be a lot darker, but he
    changed it because it was too “cruel” to the audience.
  • “We’ve been on this journey for 10 hours; a few minutes
    of hope was important to me,” he said.


Warning: This post contains spoilers for the finale
of “The Haunting of Hill House.”

Netflix’s new hit horror series, “The Haunting of Hill House,” is
dramatic and terrifying throughout its 10-episode first season,
but it ends on a positive and uplifting note. That wasn’t always
the case.

Director and writer of the series Mike Flanagan told The Hollywood
 that he originally had a different, less
hopeful ending in mind. He changed it because he felt it would
have been too “cruel” to the audience.

The series follows five siblings who, as adults, are still
dealing with the trauma they suffered as children in the haunted
Hill house. The series flashes between the present and the past,
and in the past, there is a mysterious “red door” that is always
locked. In the final episode, it’s revealed that the room was
actually each family member’s personal space that nobody else
could ever open.

the haunting of hill houseNetflix

“It was one of our writers, Rebecca Klingel, who had first
pitched it,” Flanagan told THR. “I had wanted something really
special for the Red Room. We knew we were going to keep that door
closed for a long time. I was saying along the lines of, ‘We’re
going to want to see what’s in that room so badly by the end of
this, whatever it is has to be great.’ And she pitched, ‘Well,
what if we have seen it, and we just don’t know it?’ There’s
something really insidious about being placated while being eaten
by this house.”

In the season finale, the family returns to the house that
haunted their childhood and finally discovers the secrets of the
Red Room. But Flanagan said that his original idea for the ending
would have implied that the family never leaves.

“We toyed with the idea for a little while that over that
monologue [in the finale], over the image of the family together,
we would put the Red Room window in the background,” Flanagan
said. “For a while, that was the plan. Maybe they never really
got out of that room. The night before it came time to shoot it,
I sat up in bed, and I felt guilty about it. I felt like it was
cruel. That surprised me. I’d come to love the characters so much
that I wanted them to be happy. I came in to work and said, ‘I
don’t want to put the window up. I think it’s mean and unfair.’
Once that gear had kicked in, I wanted to lean as far in that
direction as possible. We’ve been on this journey for 10 hours; a
few minutes of hope was important to me.”

Read more of Business Insider’s coverage of Netflix’s ‘The
Haunting of Hill House’:

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