Is Universal Seriously Trying Again With Their Terrible Dark Universe?

Matthew Loffhagen
(Photo: Universal)

So hey, it turns out that Universal’s absolutely awful Dark Universe might not be as dead as people thought.

Universal first attempted to get this interconnected cinematic franchise off the ground in 2014, with the terrible movie “Dracula Untold” which stars Luke Evans.

When that bombed, everything was scrapped, and in 2017 the studio tried again with “The Mummy”, starring Tom Cruise. Again, this movie proved so terrible that it murdered the franchise.

Yet, here we are again, as Universal seems to be trying for a third time to kick off the monster movie franchise that clearly nobody wants.

Artist Robert Vargas has posted a picture on Instagram which shows him meeting with a pair of key executives that oversee (or oversaw) the Dark Universe.

According to Vargas’ post, there are “monster things in the works”, and that fans should stay tuned to see what happens.

So, wow. Universal is actually trying to kick off a franchise yet again, which at least out to earn them points for tenacity!

It’s just a shame that clearly nobody wants what they’re trying to sell.

The del Toro Legacy

If there is a plan for a future monster movie that’ll be produced under the “Dark Universe” banner, then I suspect that it’d be something of a reaction to “The Shape of Water” winning Best Picture at the Oscars this year.

I can imagine Universal’s executives spitting out their champagne and gawking as Guillermo del Toro accepted his Academy Award. Wasn’t this the guy they’d initially wanted to oversee the Dark Universe?!

So, the executives no doubt rushed to dust off the notes for future movies in the Dark Universe (which I like to imagine are all written in blood in an ancient book made from sheepskin). If moviegoers are into sexy monsters, then the Dark Universe can ride a trend and squeeze every available cent out of audiences!

When (or rather, if) this movie eventually shows up, something tells me that it’ll be a sexy monster movie. It might even be about the Creature from the Black Lagoon, because Universal clearly has very few original ideas to draw from.

The Shape of Water in the Rain
Source: Fox Searchlight

Look forward to a terrible off-brand del Toro knock-off movie.

Universal has proved that the studio doesn’t know what audiences want. They think we live and breathe for shared movie universes, and that we’ll happily go watch a movie about the latest film trend with little thought for the movie’s actual story.

In reality, we all just want to watch good movies, but somehow this core truth seems lost on the studio that gave us Hugh Jackman as Van Helsing.