Why The Flash Gordon Remake Hasn't Happened Yet, According To Matthew Vaughn

Sam Jones as Flash Gordon

With reboots and remakes more commonplace than ever in Hollywood, it wasn't terribly surprising to learn years ago that Flash Gordon would once again be brought to the big screen. While the 1980 movie starring Sam Jones, Melody Anderson and Max von Sydow remains a cult classic (just watch Ted if you don't believe me), it could certainly use a refresh after nearly 40 years. However, the reason that this new Flash Gordon movie hasn't gotten off the ground yet is because Guardians of the Galaxy's release interfered with what director Matthew Vaughn had planned for the remake. When asked if the project is still happening, he answered:

Yeah, we've been working on it. For me, the only problem with Flash Gordon is Guardians [of the Galaxy] kind of stole what I would have liked to have done with it. You've got Star Wars, you've got Guardians, so you've got to have your own space opera, but you have to find something that can survive among these two very, very great franchises.

The original Flash Gordon movie and Guardians of the Galaxy are indeed remarkably similar in that they're goofy action pieces set in outer space. But with James Gunn having now delivered two successful Guardians of the Galaxy movies (with a third one on the way), Matthew Vaughn now faces the dilemma of having to deliver a Flash Gordon remake that doesn't feel like a Guardians of the Galaxy ripoff and can stand out from the juggernaut that is the Star Wars franchise, all while still staying true to the source material. That's a tough nut to crack, so it's no wonder that there's barely been any progress.

Matthew Vaughn has been attached to the new Flash Gordon movie since 2015, but he also mentioned in his interview with Collider that he'll only move forward with the remake if he's 100% committed to bringing it to life. He continued:

The way I choose films is when I know I have to make it. Simple as that. There will be a moment where I can't think of anything else other than getting behind a camera and shooting a movie. It's a very hard switch to click; once it's on, nothing stops me.

As it stands now, Matthew Vaughn will be keeping himself busy for the foreseeable future even without Flash Gordon. Kingsman: The Golden Circle is now playing in theaters, and if it's commercially successful, that improves the chance that Vaughn will get to make Kingsman 3. He is also primed to direct I Am Pilgrim, and there's been renewed speculation that he might also be the one who's tapped to helm Man of Steel 2 for the DCEU. So even if Flash Gordon does end up moving forward, there's a distinct possibility that Vaughn won't end up being the one behind the camera for it.

If there are any more updates regarding the new Flash Gordon movie, we here at CinemaBlend will be sure to let you know about them.

Adam Holmes
Senior Content Producer

Connoisseur of Marvel, DC, Star Wars, John Wick, MonsterVerse and Doctor Who lore, Adam is a Senior Content Producer at CinemaBlend. He started working for the site back in late 2014 writing exclusively comic book movie and TV-related articles, and along with branching out into other genres, he also made the jump to editing. Along with his writing and editing duties, as well as interviewing creative talent from time to time, he also oversees the assignment of movie-related features. He graduated from the University of Oregon with a degree in Journalism, and he’s been sourced numerous times on Wikipedia. He's aware he looks like Harry Potter and Clark Kent.