Everything started in 2019. An anonymous user uploaded a tilted photo of a seemingly endless closed space with yellow walls and fluorescent lights under a 4chan (an imageboard website where anyone can post and comment anonymously) thread of “disturbing images that just feel off.”
Creepy narratives started to spring up shortly after it was posted: “If you’re not careful and you noclip out of reality in the wrong areas, you’ll end up in the backrooms where it’s nothing but the stink of old moist carpet, the madness of mono-yellow, the endless background noise of fluorescent lights at maximum hum-buzz, and approximately six hundred million square miles of randomly segmented empty rooms to be trapped in.”
The photo—alongside its supposed backstory—spread like wildfire on social media until it caused a lightbulb moment for many horror content creators. While an overwhelming influx of escape room games inspired by this creepypasta (just search “the backrooms game” on Google to know what I mean) began to flood the internet, 17-year-old Kenn Parsons thought of making a series of short films on YouTube.
As if shot using a VHS camcorder in the 1990s, “The Backrooms” revolves around a young filmmaker who ends up in a room that looks similar to the viral 4chan photo—a labyrinthine space with beige-painted walls. Turns out, creepy otherworldly beings live in the room and the filmmaker has to escape them to stay alive. As of writing, the first installment “The Backrooms (Found Footage)” has already garnered more than 44 million views while the rest plays around 900,000 to 13 million.
Its viral success piqued the interest of many film production companies, but A24 (“Everything Everywhere All at Once,” “Lady Bird,” “Euphoria”) has ultimately acquired the rights to turn the series into a feature film. Kenn will direct the script written by Emmy-nominated screenwriter Roberto Patino while A24 will collaborate with Atomic Monster, Chernin Entertainment, and 21 Laps in producing.
The team is currently keeping the plot and release date under wraps, but official production is expected to start as soon as Kenn’s summer break begins. In the meantime, you can binge the existing episodes of “The Backrooms” on YouTube to have a clue about how the story would (most likely) unfold.
Still from “The Backrooms” on YouTube