After the misguided Dark Universe experiment failed at the first hurdle following the highly-publicized tales of behind-the-scenes woe, scathing reviews and disappointing box office that greeted Tom Cruise’s The Mummy, Universal took a step back and decided instead to focus on smaller-scale, more filmmaker-driven projects for their stable of classic monsters, with even the studio head admitting that the interconnected franchise idea was a failure.
First out of the gate is Saw co-creator Leigh Whannell’s The Invisible Man, which is set to hit theaters this weekend. Not only does it come from horror hit factory Blumhouse, but the early critical reactions have been extremely strong, with the movie currently sitting on an impressive 92% Rotten Tomatoes score. All the signs point to The Invisible Man reboot being a success, which opens up the doors for more of the Universal monsters to make their way back to the big screen.
As well as Paul Feig’s Dark Army and a Monster Mash musical, we’ve also heard that John Krasinksi is interested in becoming involved with The Bride of Frankenstein, while We Got This Covered has recently revealed that Benedict Cumberbatch is being eyed to play Dracula in the Renfield spinoff, with Ryan Gosling also reportedly on the studio’s wish-list to headline one of their upcoming monster movies.
Now, the same sources that told us that Han was set to return to the Fast & Furious franchise and that a Green Lantern show was coming to HBO Max, both of which turned out to be correct, say that the studio want to a crossover between The Invisible Man and The Invisible Woman at some point in the future. According to our intel, Universal are confident that the former is going to be a hit, and are interested in keeping Oliver Jackson-Cohen’s title character and Elisabeth Moss’ protagonist around for more adventures. Elizabeth Banks is currently set to direct and star in The Invisible Woman based on an original idea that she pitched, and the studio see a crossover project as the ideal way to keep the story going.
Hopefully The Invisible Woman doesn’t turn out like Banks’ last directorial effort though, with Charlie’s Angels being one of the most notorious bombs of last year, which resulted in the filmmaker going on a spectacular defensive and blaming everyone and everything for the movie’s failure. In any case, Universal certainly seem very confident in The Invisible Man, and doubling down on title characters that you can’t see could ultimately lead to a box office bonanza for the rebooted monsters universe.