James Wan Developing Universal Monster Movie

Last weekend's release of The Invisible Man proved there's still life in the world of Universal Monsters, with The Hollywood Reporter claiming that The Conjuring creator James Wan will be moving forward with a monster movie inspired by the shared world of those original creatures. The outlet didn't specify whether the film would be an entirely original concept that borrows elements from that universe or if it will serve as a reimagining of a familiar concept, similar to Invisible Man, but the initial plot details make it sound as though this could be a reinvention of the tale of Frankenstein's Monster.

The site notes, "Sources say the story takes its cues from Universal’s classic monster legacy and shines it through a modern prism. With shades of Disturbia, the story will focus on a group of teens who discover that a neighbor is building a monster in his basement. Spoiler: the monster gets loose."

Wan won't be directing the film, while Robbie Thompson has been tapped to write the feature.

Interestingly, last November saw a report emerge about Wan's upcoming film Malignant, which included the detail that Wan was developing a Frankenstein movie, only for that detail to then be deleted from the initial report. It's possible that this is that same project and that news wasn't set to be revealed at that point.

Back in 2017, Universal Pictures launched the "Dark Universe" of monster movie reboots, but with the disappointing reception of The Mummy, the franchise stagnated indefinitely. The next planned reboot, Bride of Frankenstein, earned a number of release date delays before it was scrapped entirely.

Invisible Man was written and directed by Leigh Whannell, who has collaborated with James Wan a number of times, including creating the Saw and Insidious franchise. Jason Blum has produced a number of their endeavors, and recently expressed his interest in seeing a filmmaker tackle Frankenstein.

“I’d love to do Frankenstein. I’ve tasked our filmmakers with trying to figure out just straight Frankenstein," Blum shared with The Evolution of Horror podcast. "Again, I don’t know if someone else is doing it, I don’t know anything about it, but I would love to try and I’m waiting for the great idea. The Invisible Man, I agree, the best ideas feel like, ‘My gosh, it’s so obvious, why didn’t that happen before?’ If we could come up with something as good for Frankenstein, I’d love to try that.”

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Stay tuned for details on the James Wan monster movie.

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