Universal's Dark Universe might be dead, something that doesn't appear to be stopping the studio from cranking out more monster-adjacent content. Reported Friday afternoon, Universal is now developing Monster Mash, a musical movie that is set to serve as the feature film directorial debut for Matt Stawski, a Grammy-nominated music video helmer.
First reported by Deadline, little is known about the project other than it has some genre stalwarts involved in its production. While Stawski is on board to direct, Will Widger has been hired to write a script. Some of Widger's latest work includes developing both Magic the Gathering and Lumberjanes for Fox. It's unlikely either of the projects will ever see the light of day as a direct result of the Disney and Fox merger. Both movies have since been scrapped due to restructuring and changes in content.
It stands to reason Universal plans to use the Universal Monsters in this project, but that's just speculation at this point. Deadline's report also doesn't mention what connection, if any, the movie have with Bobby Pickett's classic Halloween-time song of the same name.
Stawski and Temple Hill's John Fischer are set as executive producers. Marty Bown — also from Temple Hill — is on board as producer. Jeyun Munford and Tony Ducret are overseeing the project for Universal Studios.
Last January, Universal production head Peter Cramer offered a statement about the cancellation of the Dark Universe, something that was originally supposed to see rebooted Universal Monsters eventually crossover like the MCU or DCEU. Since then, the company has decided to take individual approaches to the movies, starting with the Elizabeth Moss-starring The Invisible Man.
“Throughout cinematic history, Universal’s classic monsters have been reinvented through the prism of each new filmmaker who brought these characters to life,” Cramer said in a statement. “We are excited to take a more individualized approach for their return to screen, shepherded by creators who have stories they are passionate to tell with them.”