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Just a few years ago, Universal had plans in place to create their own Dark Universe featuring the likes of classic movie monsters with modern adaptations of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Creature from the Black Lagoon, the Bride of Frankenstein and The Mummy. But then Alex Kurtzman’s take on the Egyptian horror tale completely flopped back in 2017. The franchise experiment seemed dead upon arrival... but now we have Leigh Whannell’s The Invisible Man.
As the flick enters its second weekend in theaters, The Invisible Man is already turning a nice profit for Blumhouse. It has made $53 million worldwide on a production budget of $7 million so far – becoming 2020’s first horror hit. If you’ve seen it, you know it does open up the door for more and now one of the film’s producers Jason Blum has his eyes on another classic monster. In his words:
I’d love to do Frankenstein. I’ve tasked our filmmakers with trying to figure out just straight Frankenstein. Again, I don’t know if someone else is doing it, I don’t know anything about it, but I would love to try and I’m waiting for the great idea. The Invisible Man, I agree, the best ideas feel like, ‘My gosh, it’s so obvious, why didn’t that happen before?’ If we could come up with something as good for Frankenstein, I’d love to try that.
It’s alive?! It sounds like the success of The Invisible Man has the Blumhouse founder interested in familar terrors again. Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein is a literary classic and pop culture pillar that has remained relavent for over 200 years. It has been a while since Hollywood has had a fresh take on the property.
There was 2014’s I, Frankenstein with Aaron Eckhart and 2015’s Victor Frankenstein with James McAvoy and Daniel Radcliffe and they were real bummers on a critical and commercial level. Frankenstein is still an interesting story to revisit and if was done right, Blumhouse could build out a Dark Universe without interconnecting them like they had planned before.
What makes The Invisible Man really stand out is how clever the idea is. It’s a completely different perspective of a character that’s been exhausted in the past. It explores relevant themes and makes him scary again. It needed a voice such as Upgrade’s Leigh Whannell to breathe new life into it and the studio certainly has some access to talent.
At one time Universal was going to make a Bride of Frankenstein movie with Angelina Jolie and according to a recent report, it’s now moving forward with Bill Condon as director. Jason Blum is not attached to this specific project – hence his comments to The Evolution of Horror about not knowing about another one in the works.
There’s also been talk about an Invisible Woman movie proposed by Elizabeth Banks. Stay tuned with us here on CinemaBlend as more updates about Universal’s future with monster movies shakes out.