If you thought we were done with release date news for the day, you were wrong. Universal has revealed even more information from CinemaCon, including a few date changes for those keeping tabs on some of their major upcoming films. In addition to previously announced dates for the Fifty Shades sequels and Fast and Furious 8, the studio has also revealed dates for Pacific Rim 2, Warcraft and a couple of films from their revamped monsters franchise.
The likes of Dracula, Frankenstein and the Wolf Man have no business aping the Marvel “shared universe” structure in the first place. They're monsters! Let them monster! Any of our well-intentioned blogging-into-the-wind was too little, too late because the head of Universal has pretty much come and out said that they're taking the horror out of their horror icons.
Universal is working overtime to revive its classic monster movies for the modern age; the latest classic creature to get a big screen revival is 'The Wolf Man,' a character whose legacy as a horror great trumps the fact that his last big-screen appearance was one of the biggest disasters in the studio's history.
Few cinematic legacies are as strong as that of the Universal Monsters, whose films have spent the past 80 years aging from B-movies into genre masterpieces. These aren't just movies; they're the foundation of an entire genre, the roots of an entire cinematic language. These aren't just great movies -- they're vital components of human culture, touchstones whose reverberations can still be felt today. And Universal has no idea what to do with them.
A while back, Universal announced plans to reboot their classic monsters into a new franchise of films which will all share a universe, similar to Marvel's Cinematic Universe, but, you know, with monsters. The project will be kicked off in 2016 with a reboot of 'The Mummy,' and now Universal has set a 2017 release date for the second film in their monster universe -- or Universal Monster Universe? UMU?
We've known for a while that Universal has been planning a reboot of 'The Mummy,' but the studio has struggled to find a director for the project, which will kick off a new era of their classic monsters. Alex Kurtzman, who recently parted ways with longtime writing partner Bob Orci, and who is helping Universal bring those famous monsters back to life, has now been tapped to direct the 'Mummy' reboot.
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?
Duncan Jones' 'Warcraft' was originally scheduled for release on December 18, 2015, which it called before 'Star Wars: Episode 7' announced when it would be hitting theaters (many thought the new 'Star Wars' would go with mid-May as with all the previous films). But now that 'Episode 7' has picked the same weekend, 'Warcraft' blinked and has moved to March 11, 2016.
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.
Following the success of Universal's horror movie 'Mama,' the studio made its desire to expand the story into a sequel known. Too bad its director, Andres Muschietti, did not want to travel down that rabbit hole, and now he's eyeing his next gig, directing the upcoming reboot of 'The Mummy.'