Filmmaker Guillermo del Toro had a phenomenal 2018, as his film The Shape of Water earned him not only the Academy Award for Best Director, but the movie also won Best Picture at the event. While some audiences might know del Toro's more prestigious work, which also includes 2006's Pan's Labyrinth, many other fans know him for his genre efforts, which include Blade II and two Hellboy movies starring Ron Perlman. Given the massive amounts of acclaim he has received in recent years, some fans are wondering if he could be returning to his comic book roots anytime soon, but the current trend of comic book adaptations casts doubt on that notion.
“At each moment of your life, you do the things that attract you. And back when I was doing Hellboy and Blade, it was a little bit counter to what was being made,” del Toro shared with Variety. “But as you grow older, your concerns as a filmmaker change. I only direct the things that I’m incredibly avid to see, and that would not exist if I didn’t tackle it. I always ask myself, ‘would this movie exist if I didn’t make it?’ And if the answer is yes, I don’t do it.”
While this response is far from a definitive "no," Blade II and Hellboy debuted in 2002 and 2004, respectively, in a time before not only the Marvel Cinematic Universe but also before Christopher Nolan's Batman Begins, when audiences were lucky to get even one comic book movie a year. Interestingly, after del Toro earned notoriety for Pan's Labyrinth, he had countless opportunities to explore, with his biggest priority being to deliver audiences Hellboy II: The Golden Army.
At this time last year, the idea of del Toro returning to the world of comic books seemed far less likely. The Blade franchise had almost entirely stagnated, while Lionsgate opted to reboot their Hellboy series with director Neil Marshall and star David Harbour. When the Hellboy reboot hit theaters earlier this year, it was both a critical and financial disappointment, while last month's San Diego Comic-Con confirmed that Mahershala Ali would be taking over the Blade role for a movie at some point in the future. Seeing del Toro return to the Blade series or hopefully revive his own Hellboy narrative with a Ron Perlman reunion could be exactly what both of those properties need, but it sounds as though the filmmaker is seeking more personally challenging prospects.
Del Toro served as a producer on Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark, which lands in theaters this Friday.
Would you like to see del Toro deliver another comic book adaptation? Let us know in the comments below!