We’ve been hearing whisperings of a new Spawn film for years, usually from creator Todd McFarlane. The iconic Image character is a part of comic history, and was hugely popular in the artist’s era of the 90s, having helped launch Image Comics alongside other powerhouse creators like Jim Lee, Whilce Portacio, Rob Liefeld, Erik Larson, Marc Silvestri, and Jim Valentino. The comic series has remained ongoing since then, though Todd McFarlane has moved in and out of the creative process with the character over the years.
One area McFarlane has kept complete control of is Spawn’s cinematic future. He spoke recently a bit more on the long-in-development film adaptation of the character with ComicBook.com, where he revealed the audience he was aiming for with the new film:
“What I can tell you is what I’ve told everybody else: it will be a definite R. I’m not going for the same crowd that Marvel and DC is going for; I’m going for the same crowd that horror film releases going for. People who want to take their boyfriend or girlfriend or go out with the girls and go to the movies and get spooked.”
He also has a pretty strong opinion about who he feels should be behind the camera:
“I’ve been living with the idea for so long that I wanted to direct it, but I knew that if I gave it to Hollywood and they spent a lot of money on it then just from a practical point of view, it wouldn’t be fair for me to then say ‘I want to direct.’ It’s not good business to spend $80 million on movie and then give it to somebody who’s not known for directing movies — but if you can make a movie for $10 million, they’ll get a lot of less experienced directors to do those movies. So I knew I needed to keep the story and the budget both tight so that when I go to Hollywood and I say ‘I have to direct it, that’s not even a negotiation, so if you can’t accept that, then the conversation is over quickly,’ then once they understand the scope and size and budget of it, they’re like ‘Oh, okay. It’s not like Todd’s coming in here asking for $100 million and then saying let me direct my first movie. He’s saying ‘Give me $10 million to make a little horror movie and let’s see if we can scare some people. We’ve done that tons of times.’”
His thought process on the project definitely has some merit, and a horror comic book adaptation might be the best direction for the character. Spawn is no stranger to the big-budget blockbuster, with a previous adaptation hitting theaters in 1998. That film, which is not fondly remembered, was directed by Mark A.Z. Dippé and starred Michael Jai White in the title role, alongside Martin Sheen and John Leguizamo. It was a messy failed origin story with sloppy CGI and over the top performances that failed to really capture the spirit of the comic, and pretty much halted any future live-action adaptations of the character, although the HBO animated series was pretty great.
Here’s hoping that McFarlane is able to get the funding needed to finally bring Spawn to the big screen in a way the creator and fans can get behind. We’ll keep waiting to hear of any more news on a Spawn adaptation, so keep it locked on Geek for any developments.
What do you think of a hard “R” horror-themed adaptation of Spawn? Do you still want to see the character on the big screen or has his time come and gone? Let us know in the comments section below!
Images: Image Comics