James Wan (The Conjuring, Saw, Insidious, Malignant) serves as executive producer for Netflix’s new supernatural mystery series Archive 81. Based loosely on a popular-found footage podcast of the same name, the series will weave together a chilling tale over two different time periods.
The original Archive 81 podcast launched in 2018 and ran for three seasons. It describes itself as a fictional podcast about horror, cities, and the subconscious. Co-creators Marc Sollinger and Daniel Powell will serve as co-producers on the Netflix series.
The synopsis reads as follows:
“When archivist Dan Turner (Athie) takes a mysterious job restoring a collection of damaged videotapes from 1994, he finds himself reconstructing the work of documentary filmmaker Melody Pendras (Shihabi) and her investigation into a dangerous cult. As Dan is drawn into Melody’s story, he becomes convinced he can save her from the terrifying end she met 25 years ago.”
Series showrunner and writer Rebecca Sonnenshine (The Boys, Vampire Diaries) has given more details about the show, saying:
“I’m obsessed with mystery box shows, the kind that lead us down a rabbit hole into a strange, dark world. Archive 81 is a character-driven, deeply emotional story about the nature of art, faith, and the search for identity — all wrapped up in a frayed blanket of existential dread. The show also gave this film geek the chance to unearth all sorts of forgotten media formats as found footage, which results in a unique, visually textured story that is both beautiful and terrifying.”
Archive 81 will star Mamoudou Athie (Underwater), Dina Shihabi (Altered Carbon), Martin Donovan (Big Little Lies), Matt McGorry (How To Get Away With Murder), Julia Chan (Katy Keene), Evan Jonigkeit, and Ariana Neal (Hidden Figures).
The series will air eight hour-long episodes and premieres on Netflix on January 14th.
Check out the trailer below.