This Christmas, Lionsgate paid tribute to the forsaken kids on Santa’s Naughty list with a new Hellboy motion poster.
The latest post from the upcoming reboot’s official Instagram account shows David Harbour as the titular hero against an appropriately hellish background. While the slogan on the bottom left sends the warning, “Mess with the devil, you get the horns,” the video’s caption provides a more festive message:
“For everyone on the Naughty list. #Hellboy #MerryXmas”
It’s a nice enough piece of promotion, but after a month this heavy with marketing material for Neil Marshall’s next film, the studio was likely hoping that fans would be feeling a little more sold on the new Hellboy than they currently are, with the first trailer in particular drawing a mixed response.
A major issue here is that after months of hearing that the reboot would offer a darker, more horror-indebted take on the property than the two Guillermo del Toro movies, the lightly comedic tone of the recent, punchline-heavy teaser proved a little jarring.
Nonetheless, while the trailer wasn’t the gruesome affair that some fans expected, the film is confirmed to be rated R, suggesting that the marketing may be holding back on most of the movie’s darkest moments. Indeed, just a few days ago Harbour insisted that the new Hellboy “is gory… it’s like a horror movie. There’s a lot of blood in it. It’s brutal.” The actor also went on to tease that the flaming sword visible in the above poster will be put to good use.
Still, it was always going to be a challenge for Lionsgate to try filling the void left by del Toro and actor Ron Perlman, and so far, the fans by and large seem more skeptical than ever. We’ll see if the Hellboy reboot can win over the doubters yet when the film hits theaters on April 12th, 2019.