It’s been one heck of a week for franchise fans, with (mostly) exciting news emerging about HANNIBAL, GHOSTBUSTERS, KING KONG, Universal Monsters and the ALIEN series. Yup, it’s going to be a big Horror News Rundown this time, so let’s not waste any time.
Onward, to the future!
We’ve Got Good News and Bad News About HANNIBAL…
The good news for all the Fannibals out there is that Bryan Fuller, the executive producer of the acclaimed TV series about Hannibal “The Cannibal” Lecter, still has plans for the future of the series. The bad news is, he can’t do anything about it for at least two years.
The issue has to do with the rights to the series, which may have been canceled at NBC but still streams on Amazon, which prevented any hope of a new season premiering on Netflix. But, according to Fuller, “Two years after the last airing of the show, we can investigate our options […] August 2017 is when we can actually start talking about it. That’s when we would have to see what the rights are for the character and for the story, and see who’s interested and how we get it done. I have the story, and the cast is excited for the story, so we’re ready to go if somebody wants to go.” (Source: Collider)
The cast has been freed from their contracts but it sounds like everyone wants to come back for more HANNIBAL, provided of course they actually can. Looks like we’ll find out in two years!
Is Dwayne Johnson The New WOLFMAN?
Few actors are in higher demand than Dwayne Johnson, whose upcoming projects already include SAN ANDREAS 2, SHAZAM, DOC SAVAGE, RAMPAGE, BIG TROUBLE IN LITTLE CHINA, and JUMANJI… just to name a few.
But that hasn’t stopped the rumor mill from reporting that Universal Pictures is courting the CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE star to play The Wolfman in their upcoming, extended universe of horror movies. (Source: Deadline)
The Universal Monsters franchise is going to kick off with THE MUMMY in 2017, and is expected to include THE BRIDE OF FRANKENSTEIN (with Angelina Jolie rumored to be up for the lead role) and THE INVISIBLE MAN (with Johnny Depp officially cast). Reboots of VAN HELSING and THE CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON are also reportedly in development.
Dwayne Johnson is a charismatic leading man, and may even have the pathos necessary to convey the tragedy of being a wolfman. Either way, it’s almost guaranteed to be better than that time he played a tooth fairy.
KING KONG Gets An Upgrade
We still know very little about the upcoming KING KONG reboot, KONG: SKULL ISLAND, but we did finally confirm a key piece of information from the production this week: King Kong is going to be bigger than ever. Literally.
“This is going to be the biggest Kong there’s ever been,” director Jordon Vogt-Roberts revealed at CineEurope. “Not 10 foot or 30 foot, but a 100-foot ape.” (Source: Hollywood Reporter)
Previous incarnations of King Kong were generally between 25-60 feet tall, although in KING KONG VS. GODZILLA he reportedly topped out at 148 feet tall, so that he could combat the giant fire-breathing lizard without looking puny. (It is generally believed that the King Kong we will meet in SKULL ISLAND will be significantly taller so that when the two franchise cross over once again, it will seem like a fair fight.)
We’ll see just how big he gets when KONG: SKULL ISLAND will hit theaters on March 10, 2017.
Noomi Rapace Will Return in ALIEN: COVENANT
The cast was assembled and the production began on Ridley Scott’s PROMETHEUS sequel (and ALIEN prequel) ALIEN: COVENANT, but without any mention of the previous film’s star, Noomi Rapace, whose character survived the events of the original film.
It certainly seemed like she simply wouldn’t appear in the follow-up, for one reason or another, but that assumption turned out to be false. Noomi Rapace isn’t just back for ALIEN: COVENANT, but she is reportedly filming “weeks worth of scenes” for the movie. (Source: Deadline)
Still, it’s odd that Rapace would be such a major player in PROMETHEUS but only just now get announced as a cast member in the sequel. Maybe there was some behind the scenes ruckus, or maybe someone just forgot to mention her in a press release, or maybe there was a major rewrite at some point. It’s hard to say. We may find out when ALIEN: COVENANT comes out on August 4, 2017.
Jim Carrey and Eli Roth Bring You ALEISTER ARCANE
Horror filmmaker Eli Roth signed up to remake DEATH WISH this week, but he’s not leaving the scary movie genre any time soon. He has also teamed up with actor/comedian Jim Carrey for ALEISTER ARCANE, a film based on the IDW comic book series written by Steve Niles (30 DAYS OF NIGHT). (Source: Hollywood Reporter)
Jim Carrey would play a small town TV horror host, kind of like Elvira, who got in trouble for his gory sketches and eventually went on trial, and went to an early grave, and put a curse on the town.
ALEISTER ARCANE will be adapted for the screen by Jon Croker, who previously wrote the screenplay for THE WOMAN IN BLACK 2 ANGEL OF DEATH.
Nicolas Cage and Selma Blair Are MOM AND DAD
Movies about killer parents are too few and far between, so we’re willing to get a little excited about MOM AND DAD, a horror thriller set to star Nicolas Cage and Selma Blair as parents suffering from mass hysteria, who turn violent on their two kids. (Source: The Tracking Board)
MOM AND DAD will be written and directed by Brian Taylor, half of the filmmaking duo Neveldine/Taylor, whose previous credits include CRANK and GHOST RIDER: SPIRIT OF VENGEANCE. These filmmakers may not always make movies together anymore, but they’re both sticking around in the horror genre. Mark Neveldine’s first solo film was last year’s supernatural thriller THE VATICAN TAPES.
GHOSTBUSTERS: ECTO FORCE is Coming to TV
Fans of the GHOSTBUSTERS movies would do well to remember that the beloved franchise has a longer history on television than it ever did in theaters. So it only makes sense that, in an effort to expand their GHOSTBUSTERS cinematic universe, Sony is working on a new animated series called GHOSTBUSTER: ECTO FORCE, which takes place in the year 2050.
GHOSTBUSTERS: ECTO FORCE tells the story of “a new generation of Ghostbusters in the year 2050 who capture ghosts around the world with help from local teams — and some very cool gear!” (Source: Hollywood Reporter)
It’s a premise that expands on the GHOSTBUSTERS concept but also takes place far enough in the future that it probably won’t get in the way of Sony’s feature film franchise plans. (Unless of course the rebooted series lasts 34 years without getting rebooted, which seems pretty danged unlikely.)
GHOSTBUSTERS: ECTO FORCE will be joined on the airwaves (or rather, on the cables) by a TV series based on Sony’s HOTEL TRANSYLVANIA movies, which is also prepping a third feature film installment directed by Genndy Tartakovsky.
Listen to the New GHOSTBUSTERS Theme Song!
GHOSTBUSTERS: ECTO FORCE wasn’t the only piece of GHOSTBUSTERS news this week, although it may turn out to be the best. The new theme song for Paul Feig’s reboot was released online, courtesy of Fall Out Boy and Missy Elliott, and it’s… um…
Yeah… Go ahead and give this one a listen. It sure is a thing, alright…