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Discussion in 'Universal Monsters' started by Doctor Omega, Feb 6, 2017.
Based on this mission statement they seemed to be thinking the right way about it. Work out the key factors that are important, identify some "rules" to break to keep things interesting without taking away what makes the monsters who they are. And focus on the characters highlighting the dichotomy between good and evil. It's a shame they seemed to not pay any attention to that so far, instead signing up big names for all the roles and trying to roll out standard action blockbusters and hope that the actors names will sell the movie.
Right? They tend to forget that the stars of the original films were all character actors, not stars, at least not until these movies came out. No one had heard of Lugosi or Karloff. Even when Hammer did their take on the films, they didn't go with star power (I mean, they did, but they were still unknown).
My biggest problem is that when you take movies that work best in an archaic setting and bring them into the modern day, some of the magic is lost. Sure, you can make a vampire or werewolf movie in the modern day, but these particular characters work best in the Victorian or Edwardian setting. That's one thing the 90s remake of The Mummy got right, keeping it in an earlier setting.
Plus, these movies worked better in spite of not having modern SFX, not because of them.
Okay, I'm done ranting.
The DARK UNIVERSE has been officially and quietly cancelled.
Universal are not making a huge announcement of this, but it is the case.
The two men who originated this "shared universe" are gone from the studio and THE MUMMY debacle has stopped this thing in it's tracks. THE BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN has been "pulled from the schedules" and all other previously announced titles such as THE INVISIBLE MAN, VAN HELSING and THE CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON have been quietly forgotten.
Here's to an abandoned world of Gods and Monsters......
Meanwhile another studio went ahead and kind of made a CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON film anyway.....
Enough of this "DARK UNIVERSE" nonsense...
At least until Universal cook up another dumb scheme.....
This way for the real deal.......
“Invisible Man” Scribe On Dark Universe Fate
“Men in Black” and “Now You See Me” scribe Ed Solomon, who has been attached to pen Universal’s “The Invisible Man” film for two years, has confirmed he’s left the project. This new adaptation of the iconic H.G. Wells novel was set to be a part of Universal’s “Dark Universe” initiative and star Johnny Depp in the role.
However with the failure of “The Mummy” reboot last year, and a general audience souring on attempts to build elaborate cinematic universes without a proper foundation, the fate of all the films in that ‘Dark Universe’ stable seems unclear. Solomon explains his exit to Digital Spy:
“At the end of the day, I think Universal and I had a different idea of what the movie was gonna be. We began thinking that our notions would meld, and I should’ve listened more closely to what they really were wanting.
I think Universal has had to come to a kind of reckoning of, ‘What are we doing with the Dark Universe?’ and, ‘What is our real intention with it?’, and I think they’re reconfiguring it now, which I think is probably good. So I’m not working on it.”
The comments follow ‘Dark Universe’ gatekeepers Alex Kurtzman and Chris Morgan departing the would-be franchise. Bill Condon’s “Bride of Frankenstein” is the next film in the planned series.
It's very frustrating. I know cinematic universes are in overkill mode at the moment but if there's one franchise that should lend itself to this sort of thing, surely it's this? How they managed to stuff this up is beyond me.
I could go back and watch HOUSE OF FRANKENSTEIN or FRANKENSTEIN MEETS THE WOLFMAN etc. any time and love each film every time.
I have yet to see the new version of THE MUMMY.
Not putting it off, but not one of the clips I have seen seems to have a trace of what the Universal Monster Universe should be about i.m.o. and making it and marketing it as to what seemed like a Tom Cruise action vehicle simply compounded the error.
The makers of the film just didn't seem to "get" it.
And I am not sure that they ever will, unless they hire a creative fan with a vision, to oversee this "Dark Universe", who can blatantly see where they are going wrong.
Much the same as hiring someone like Zack Snyder to direct a movie about one of the most iconic superheroes of all time, someone who should be a beacon of hope and inspiration, and turns it into a washed out toned disaster piece, because his "vision" shouldn't have to actually follow the source material or live up to fans' expectations.
I like the idea of the Dark Universe, but for starters, the original Universal horror movies didn't start out that way. This all just happened organically, with all of them separate movies, and then eventually tied together in an effort to get kids in the theatre seats. And we were lucky enough to end up with some very memorable movies and acting legends to make our days a little less dour.
And Marvel have been bastards, making a successful franchise connected movie universe, by slowly building upon several strong character-driven films that were good, and tying them all together with a brilliant team film in The Avengers, and then building upon that. Don't they see what they have done? They went and forced other studios to try and copy their success without actually putting in the work to make their franchises good. What were they thinking?
Toho are planning a shared GODZILLA UNIVERSE now.....
JASON BLUM WOULD LOVE TO RESURRECT UNIVERSAL'S DARK UNIVERSE
Gather round, boys and girls, and let me tell you the tale of the Dark Universe. ‘Twas a time when Universal Pictures thought it wise to kick-start a shared universe of monster movies akin to the Marvel Universe. Sadly those plans went down faster than Dracula next to garlic after the release of the dreadful THE MUMMY. Now the franchise seems deader than its characters, but one of the top producers today – Blumhouse’s Jason Blum (GET OUT, SPLIT) – seems very into the idea of taking the reins and ressurecting the franchise from its tomb.
Blum recently took to Twitter to hold an “Ask Me Anything” session, and of course, fans wanted to ask the producer of some of the biggest horror movies of the decade about all things horror. One person asked if he would be interested in taking over the handling of Universal’s Dark Universe, to which Blum had a very blunt, excited response.
The idea of him taking over isn’t too far-fetched. He currently does a lot of business with Universal, as Blumhouse releases movies with them, along with having a first-look deal. Plus, right now plans for the DU seem to be at a standstill. Both Alex Kurtzman and Chris Morgan, the men in charge of spearheading the franchise, have bowed out, and not much has come from the planned movies starring the likes of Tom Cruise, Javier Bardem, Johnny Depp, Russell Crowe, Angelina Jolie and more.
When it comes to rebooting classic movie monsters Blum wants to bring more than the likes of Dracula and Frankenstein into his fold. He’s currently producing the reboot/sequel of HALLOWEEN (out October 19) and has apparently tried to get the rights to other franchises like Friday the 13th and The Crow.
“Mummy” Reboot Director Talks Its Problems
Universal Pictures’ plans for an interconnected ‘Dark Universe’ cinematic world effectively collapsed before they got started.
The initiative came together under the purview of Alex Kurtzman and Chris Morgan, with a writers room developing scripts for films based on characters like Van Helsing, The Wolfman, Bride of Frankenstein, The Invisible Man, Dracula and more with actors like Javier Bardem and Johnny Depp even posing for an official photo.
Kurtzman got the ball rolling with the Tom Cruise-led “The Mummy” reboot which he directed. However, that film’s critical and commercial failure, a solid $409 million worldwide but a woeful $80 million domestic, ended everything.
Kurtzman has moved on, steering back to the “Star Trek” franchise which he helped reboot for the cinema in 2009 and now is in charge of its small screen ambitions with “Star Trek: Discovery”. Speaking about the second season of ‘Discovery’ ahead of its launch next week, the topic of “The Mummy” came up and he admits to THR he wasn’t happy with it:
“The Mummy wasn’t what I wanted it to be. I’m no longer involved in that [Dark Universe] and have no idea what’s going on with it. I look back on it now [and] what felt painful at the time ended up being an incredible blessing for me.
I learned that I need to follow my own instincts, and when I can’t fully do that, I don’t think I can succeed. Those films are beautiful because the monsters are broken characters, and we see ourselves in them. I hope those are the movies that they make; I want to see them.”
For now Universal hasn’t made clear when it intends to try and get new adaptations of its classic monsters franchise going. The success of rival Warners’ Monster-verse blending the “Godzilla” and “King Kong” franchises however show it is possible.
There were two things going against The Mummy. A) They tried to inorganically force a cinematic universe, which cannot be done. Marvel got it done through trial and error. WB and DC tried, and it didn't work because they rushed it. The original Universal monsters weren't meant to be a shared universe, but through a decade and a half of making individual movies, they were able to work them into movies in a creative way. B) Tom Cruise. Many of those behind the scenes have said that he had too much control over the movie, and the end product was an overly dramatic action piece that doesn't work as action or horror. Funnily enough, I rewatched the 99 film recently, and what works is that it doesn't take itself seriously. Same with the sequel (the third film isn't terrible, but it doesn't fit with the first two, and the absence of Rachel Weisz hurts it).