So after twenty years of promises, that Spawn movie inches closer to reality.
Deadline reports actor Jaime Foxx will star as Al Simmons in Blumhouse’s upcoming screen version of Todd McFarlane’s Spawn. The early Image Comics title told the tale of Simmons, a betrayed black ops agent who accepts a deal with the Devil to return to Earth in order to see his wife. Unfortunately, the devil’s deal brings him back one year later as a burnt-beyond-recognition Hellspawn. Doomed to lead Hell’s army into battle against the forces of Heaven, Al has a clock over his head and powers at his disposal. When his powers are all used up, so to will be his remaining free will.
As part of the initial Image Comics line, the title was quite influential and saw its first feature film version with 1998’s Spawn. The movie starred Michael Jai White in the title role with Martin Sheen and John Leguizamo as his principal antagonists. The film, made very much in the mold of 1989’s Batman, was not well received with McFarlane promising a stripped-down, grittier sequel to follow. After offering “updates” on the sequel for about a decade, he began to talk about a rebooted Spawn with the grittier horror movie feel he talked up when the sequel was a distant possibility.
McFarlane, a former comic book artist and well-known toy maker, will make his directorial debut with the film. He promises a low-budget feature, consistent with Blumhouse low-cost ethos, which will not retell Al’s origins as the Hellspawn.
“This is not a man in a rubber suit, it’s not a hero that’s going to come and save the damsel. It’s none of that,” McFarlane told the site. “At the end of the movie, I’m hoping that the audience will say either, is this a ghost that turns into a man, or is it a man that turns into a ghost?” He also added his intention to make a Spawn trilogy.
While McFarlane’s comments are not new, signing Foxx to star is a major indication Blumhouse is backing the project and seeing it to completion. That, in and of itself, is amazing change in status for the 20-year-old project. Although, it is still early days for this iteration of Spawn, meaning there is no production start date or release date scheduled as of yet. But for fans of McFarlane’s antihero, word that the character may soon appear on screen again will be the best news they hear all day.
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