Just 5 months after Universal released the first teaser image of some of the stars of their upcoming new Dark Universe film franchise the duo of Alex Kurtzman and Chris Morgan, hired to be the architects of the universe, have exited the project according to THR.
The teaser included A-list actors like Johnny Depp, Javier Bardem, and Russel Crowe and was meant to hook fans on the revival of characters like the Invisible Man, Wolf Man, Frankenstein, and Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Unfortunately, none of the planned remakes looks to still be alive and kicking. Universal even halted the filming of Bride of Frankenstein which had already begun production in London. Reportedly, the halt was due to execs feeling that the script written by director Bill Condon wasn’t ready.
After viewers failed to get wrapped up in The Mummy, the first film of the franchise, it isn’t particularly surprising that they have put the venture on hold. Universal’s president of production Peter Cramer said that the Dark Universe has not ended, but it remains to be seen if we will see another remake of the classic monster universe anytime soon.
We’ve learned many lessons throughout the creative process on Dark Universe so far, and we are viewing these titles as filmmaker-driven vehicles, each with their own distinct vision,” Cramer said. “We are not rushing to meet a release date and will move forward with these films when we feel they are the best versions of themselves.”
It seems like a strange time for Universal to hit the pause button when horror is kicking ass at both the box office and in sales. Take Andy Muschietti’s IT or Guillermo del Toro’s Creature from the Black Lagoon inspired film The Shape of Water, for example, both which might very well be Oscar contenders this year.