We’ve been hearing about it for a while, but Universal Pictures is looking to relaunch the original “Cinematic Universe.” Yes, long before Marvel Studios made them all the rage, Universal was making monster movies that were all loosely interconnected back in the 1930s and 1940s. So the granddaddy of all Cinematic Universe, the one that included such iconic characters as Dracula, The Mummy, Frankenstein, The Wolf Man, and The Invisible Man, is getting a fresh coat of paint starting next year when The Mummy arrives in theaters starring Hollywood royalty Tom Cruise and Russell Crowe.
With The Mummy now set to rise from its tomb, Universal has now turned its sights towards its next fantastic beast: The Wolf Man.
The Hollywood Reporter has revealed that Universal has hired Dave Callaham to handle a new draft of the script for The Wolf Man. The first draft was written by Aaron Guzikowski (Prisoners). Callaham’s previous credits include Legendary’s big Godzilla reboot from 2014, as well as the first two The Expendables movies.
The Wolf Man mythos centers on a man named Lawrence Talbot, who is attacked by a vicious beast while visiting his estranged homeland. The bite of the beast leaves him cursed, making it so that every time the moon is full he unwillingly transforms into a half-man, half-wolf monster.
As recently as 2010, Universal tried to reboot The Wolf Man. But that film, starring Benicio del Toro and directed by Joe Johnston, ended up going out with a whimper.
There’s no word yet on who they’re looking at to star in The Wolf Man, or even who will direct it, but considering they managed to snag Cruise and Crowe for The Mummy, it’s pretty clear that Universal is willing to aim really high. Oddly enough, I’d love to see someone like Michael Sheen (Masters of Sex) or Ethan Hawke play Talbot, but I can easily see them going after someone like Chris Hemsworth.
The Wolf Man has long been my favorite of the “classic movie monsters.” I’ve always thought that the mythos lent itself nicely to both spectacle and metaphorical contemplation. The idea of the inner beast coming out and taking over, while wrestling with the ghosts of our past, has always been fascinating for me. So I’ll be keeping an eye on this one, for sure.