It inspired Stephen King’s haunted hotel in “The Shining.” Now, the Stanley Hotel in Estes Park will be able to build on its reputation for horror even more.
Today, Gov. Jared Polis’ office and the Colorado Office of Film, Television and Media announced that mega-producer Jason Blum and his company, Blumhouse (“Get Out,” “The Purge” “Five Nights at Freddy’s” and Spike Lee’s “BlacKkKlansman”) will be the sole curator of the 10,000-foot exhibition space in the Stanley Film Center, set to open in 2026.
“We searched the world for the right partner to bring the Stanley Film Center exhibit space to life as a horror destination, and there’s no one better than Blumhouse,” said John Cullen, president of Grand Heritage Hotel Group and owner of the Stanley, in a press release.
“This is arguably a $400 million project,” he added on a call with Gov. Polis, whom he credits with making it happen. “Jason got a call from the governor and said to me, ‘I’ve filmed in 23 states, and this is the first time I’ve spoken with a governor.’ This must be a pro-business state.”
“This is a junction of business and creativity,” Polis said. “Colorado does both well. That was part of the value proposition Jason saw, and why the center’s going to thrive.”
Blumhouse will curate exhibits pulled from the company’s catalog of its movie and television franchises, as well as its gaming offerings.
“The Stanley Hotel is hallowed ground for horror fans, and that makes this presence at the Stanley Film Center a natural extension for Blumhouse,” Blum said in Friday release.
Blumhouse’s role in the Stanley Film Center adds to its ambitions to become a international destination. “Jason Blum sold $5.7 billion in tickets in the past 10 years,” said Cullen. “Blumhouse is internationally recognized in the industry.”
“Don’t forget that Blumhouse’s minority partner is this thing called Comcast, Universal NBC. So not only are we getting Jason Blum, his parent company wants a piece of this, too,” Cullen added.
Blumhouse’s involvement with the Stanley Film Center is the second major announcement in as many months about the Stanley Hotel. In November, the Sundance Institute, home to the nation’s top film festival and film creatives labs, announced that its signature Directors Lab will take place at the storied hotel, located at the entrance to Rocky Mountain National Park, in May.
“Nothing beats the inspirational backdrop of Estes Park, the gateway to the Rocky Mountain National Park,” Polis added.
As for the Blumhouse Space, as it’s being called, “think of it as a mini-Academy Museum dedicated to horror,” said Colorado film commissioner Donald Zuckerman. “Ghastly.”
“Fans are going to get closer than ever before to their favorite films,” Blum said. “though they may want to keep their distance with a few of the ‘items’ in our collection. We’re excited to get to work, but first we need to make it out of the hedge maze.”
Lisa Kennedy is a Denver-based freelance writer who specializes in film and theater.