Pacino and Stevens Starring in ‘The Ritual’ Based on a True Story

Al Pacino Dan Stevens

April 23, 2024

Written by Kelli Marchman McNeely

Kelli Marchman McNeely is the owner of She is an Executive Producer of "13 Slays Till Christmas" which is out on Digital and DVD and now streaming on Tubi. She has several other films in the works. Kelli is an animal lover and a true horror addict since the age of 9 when she saw Friday the 13th. Email:

2024 is the year of the supernatural, with films like Late Night with the Devil and The First Omen conjuring chills. Another film is about to be added to that list. News has come via Variety that Al Pacino (Scarface) and Dan Stevens (“Downtown Abbey”) are starring in the exorcism film The Ritual, directed by David Midell.

A Story Steeped in Reality

The Ritual, penned by Midell and Enrico Natale, is more than a fictional horror story. It draws inspiration from Emma Schmidt’s real possession case, one of the most well-documented cases of exorcism in American history. The film promises an authentic portrayal of the true, harrowing events.

A Clash of Faith

The narrative centers on two priests – a disillusioned one, played by Stevens, and a veteran grappling with his past, portrayed by Pacino. Despite their contrasting beliefs, they must unite to perform a dangerous series of exorcisms on a young woman reportedly possessed, named Emma Schmidt.

A Seasoned Cast and Crew

The Ritual boasts an impressive team in front of and behind the camera. Ashley Greene and Abigail Cowen join Al Pacino and Dan Stevens, while Andrew Stevens, Mitchell Welch, and Natale serve as producers. Director David Midell’s previous film, The Killing of Kenneth Chamberlain, garnered critical acclaim, including several Independent Spirit Award nominations. He collaborates once again with Enrico Natale, his creative partner who also produced and edited The Killing of Kenneth Chamberlain. Their combined filmography boasts over a dozen film festival awards and prestigious nominations.

A Highly Anticipated Release

With its powerhouse cast, true-story inspiration, and award-winning creative team, The Ritual is a must-see for horror fans. Watch for a theatrical release in 2025. XYZ Films has secured worldwide rights to the feature and plans a 2025 theatrical release to be announced following Cannes.


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