The Purge has become a yearly institution in theaters, with small-budget films racking up big money at the box office as people flock to the cinema to witness what happens when all crimes, including murder, are made legal for one twelve hour period. But the man who's responsible for this franchise is now saying that fans may not have to wait a year between movies for much longer: it sounds like The Purge is getting a TV series of its own.
In an interview with CinemaBlend, writer/director James DeMonaco confirmed that a show is in the works, ideally for cable:
Yes! Not an anthology... I guess kind of an anthology -- more of an interwoven anthology. They came to me about a TV show, my idea is that you do six or seven storylines. And I would kind of intercut them, use flashbacks.
The idea of why I like the idea of a maybe 10 hour TV thing on this, the one thing you really can't do on the films is, just because of mere real estate and time, is you can't get into the nuance and complexity that would drive someone to commit a terrible act on this night. Whether it's revenge or out of passion, but what might be interesting in a TV show is with a flashback narrative, if you start on Purge Night but you go back to show how people have gotten to where they are. Where you see a couple that's gone haywire on this night, but let's show everything that's led up to this moment of a husband trying to kill a wife -- the cheating or the accusations of cheating or money problems. It will be interesting to show those arcs, those dramatic and complex arcs that get people to where they pick up a gun or a knife and kill someone else. I think there's something cool that we can do with the real estate of TV -- 10 hours, potentially.
As for when we'll actually see that show, CB asked if it might be within a year or so and DeMonaco was optimistic about that chance:
I think so, dude, yeah! They're far ahead on the TV front... pretty far ahead. Not to get into the nuance of how it all goes down, we're talking about deals right now, money is being spoken about. Things like that. So I think it's being taken very seriously from the higher-ups who obviously dictate everything.
That's exciting news for fans of the film series, and even for those who like the concept of the show but wish the movies had been able to dig into the premise a little more. I didn't get a chance to see The Purge: Election Year, but I liked The Purge: Anarchy way more than the first movie because of the way it expanded that franchise's universe. With much more time to deal with in a television series (presumably in addition to more movies), they could dive deeper not only the mythology behind how the Purge came to be, but as DeMonaco says, into characters' mindsets on Purge night...and that may be the most promising aspect of the franchise as a whole.