Few movie studios have a legacy as clearly defined by horror movies as Universal, who made their name in the early days of cinema with films like 'Dracula,' 'Frankenstein,' 'The Wolfman' and 'The Mummy.' And no one seems to be more aware of the importance those icons have than the studio itself. Why else would they be launching a massive campaign to revive their classic monsters in a series of films over the next few years?
Ah, a week at the box office where the new release flies completely under the radar and everything else feels like it's just hanging out because there's nothing else to push it off the charts. Welcome to January. Welcome to the home of movies like 'I Frankenstein,' which was dead on arrival this weekend and will vanish into dollar theaters within the next week or so.
Quite frankly as misguided and problematic as the forlorn romanticism of Kenneth Branagh’s 1994 adaptation, not to mention as ridiculously self-serious, Stuart Beattie’s ‘I, Frankenstein’ isn’t even campy enough to be fun. Cut from the mold of the films in the ‘Underworld’ series, Beattie’s film similarly eschews the natural intrigue of the original mythology to pump it full of steroids and Hot Topic-style cool, adding an epic, age-old conflict between no less than angels (well, gargoyles) and demons for Frankenstein’s monster to be caught between – all of which showcases an excess of thought, and yet a shocking lack of brains.
Early last year, we learned that the screenwriting team of Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman were tasked with bringing 'Van Helsing' and 'The Mummy' back to the big screen for Universal Studios. And since then ... silence. But now Orci, while on the road promoting the upcoming film adaptation of 'Ender's Game' (on which he's a producer), spoke more about the projects. Turns out, it seems that what Universal is planning may be bigger than we thought.
Aside from his upcoming performance as Allen Ginsberg in 'Kill Your Darlings' (a movie in which he has a much talked-about gay sex scene with Dane DeHaan) and the false rumor about him playing Freddie Mercury in the upcoming biopic, Daniel Radcliffe had his first days of rehearsals for a new 'Frankenstein' movie. No, this is not anything like 'I, Frankenstein.' In fact, the actor opened up about the project, providing a few nuggets on this mysterious new rendition.
It was already weird that we're getting a sci-fi/action version of the Frankenstein story in the form of 'I, Frankenstein,' but the concept of another take on the iconic tale starring Daniel Radcliffe as Igor was even stranger. Now, this latter version has gotten a little more bonkers with the addition of the great James McAvoy as none other than Victor Frankenstein himself.
Fans who came out for Lionsgate's Comic-Con 2013 panel for 'The Hunger Games' sequel, 'Catching Fire,' also got a taste of the studio's lesser-known offering: 'I, Frankenstein.' It was only recently that the film kickstarted its promotional rounds with posters, images and the like, but did its presentation in Hall H on Saturday, July 20 intrigue the fans enough?
Guillermo del Toro, always a busy man with about two dozen projects in development at once, has been working on an adaptation of Mary Shelley's 'Frankenstein' for years. And while it's not clear just yet if he'll ever realize his dream of making the film, he's apparently already eyeing his lead: Benedict Cumberbatch!