After completely dropping the ball with their plans for the Dark Universe shared franchise, Universal is taking a different approach to rebooting their classic monster movies. In theaters right now is Leigh Whannell’s The Invisible Man, which looks to be kickstarting a series of filmmaker-driven, lower-budget efforts that twist the studio’s iconic horror properties in a new direction. And joining the list of similar projects could be a new Jekyll and Hyde movie.
We Got This Covered has heard from our sources – the same ones that previously told us about a new Scream being in the works and that a Swamp Thing pic is in development, which Bloody Disgusting has since confirmed – that Universal is working on a fresh adaptation of Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic novel The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. What’s more, Joaquin Phoenix – fresh off winning an Oscar for Joker – is being eyed to play the lead role(s).
Jekyll/Hyde previously appeared in 2017’s The Mummy, as played by Russell Crowe, with the movie establishing him as Universal’s version of Nick Fury who would’ve popped up across various films. Obviously, though, with that franchise dead, we’ll never see Crowe reprise the part. Presumably, this new project will find some kind of original take on the material that will bring back the darkness and intrigue of the character, much like Whannell’s Invisible Man.
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And you can see why Phoenix appears to be their top choice. He’d be incredible in a dual role like this one, no doubt finding a way to sidestep the cliches that’ve built up around the horror legend and do something interesting with it. At this stage, though, it’s unknown if he’s been formally approached or if there’s any chance he’d sign up for the movie. Universal has managed to land big stars for similar productions before, though, so there’s every possibility they’ll be able to nab him, too. For now, however, we’ve only been told that they’re eyeing him.
Do you like the idea of seeing Joaquin Phoenix swap Arthur Fleck/Joker for Jekyll and Hyde, though? Let us know in the comments section below.