It’s alive! Okay, wrong film franchise, but same legendary studio and same genre. While theFrankenstein franchise is not being resurrected (yet, anyway), Universal Studios, home of some of the greatest monsters of all-time in American film (Dracula, Frankenstein, Wolfman, and my personal favorite, the Creature from the Black Lagoon), is resurrecting the Mummy franchise. Now, I know you’re probably thinking, “didn’t they already reboot it in the early 2000s,” and you’d be right. However, save for the first one, the franchise was lackluster in just about every way and didn’t truly do justice to the 1932 original. Thankfully, Universal is giving it another crack, and this time they’ve signed on a big-gun screenwriter to put things right.
According to Variety, the studio has signed Jon Spaihts to pen the script. If the name doesn’t sound familiar, all you’ll need to know is that he was the screenwriter for Ridley Scott’s upcomingAlien prequel, Prometheus. That should tell you that not only is Spaihts comfortable with rebooting franchises, but he is confident in his abilities to take on hugely popular and genre-defining material in a prequel fashion. I have to hand it to Universal on this one, because a film can live and die on the strength of its screenwriter.
Said Spaihts: “I see it as the sort of opportunity I had with ‘Prometheus.’ To go back to a franchise’s roots in dark, scary source material, and simultaneously open it up to an epic scale we haven’t seen before.”
Judging from this statement and Spaihts’ past work, he will not be going the PG-13 route that the most recent reboot took. To be fair, the 1932 version, by the standards of the day, was terrifying and graphic, not the adventure-based style that the Brendan Frasier films played up. If you have yet to see the trailer for Scott’s upcoming prequel to his science-fiction benchmark of a film, Alien, please, go to Youtube immediately after reading this and check it out. All signs point to Scott capping off his trifecta of sci-fi classics (Blade Runner, Alien) with perhaps his most intense. We can chalk a decent portion of the film’s potential greatness to Spaihts.
The newest reboot of the Mummy franchise does not have a release date at this time, but considering that Spaihts now is off the hook from writing duties for Prometheus, he will probably be getting to work pretty quickly.