Director Bill Condon is now confirmed to direct the Bride of Frankenstein reboot, with an early 2019 release date in place. Condon has directed a wide variety of successful and popular films to date, including 2006’s Dreamgirls, the final two Twilight movies and this year’s megahit Beauty and the Beast live-action retelling.

Condon’s first film as director was Gods & Monsters, a 1998 drama that he wrote and directed and for which he won an Best Adapted Screenplay Academy Award. That film told the story of James Whale (played by Ian McKellen), the gay director of the 1930s editions of Frankenstein and The Bride of Frankenstein, and his life in his later years in the 1950s. And now, Condon is returning to the Frankenstein universe, in a different way.

Bill Condon will direct a new version of The Bride of Frankenstein, for release on February 14th, 2019, per Universal’s announcement. The film will be part of the new “Universal Monsters” series, which is now officially known as the Dark Universe. The original Bride of Frankenstein was directed by Whale in 1935, starring Elsa Lanchester  as the Bride, and derived from Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein novel from the 19th century. Condon had been rumored for the project back in April.

According to Universal Pictures Chairman Donna Langley, in a statement:

“We take enormous pride in the creativity and passion that has inspired the reimagining of Universal’s iconic monsters and promise audiences we will expand this interconnected series strategically… The enterprise masterfully developed by Chris (Morgan) and Alex (Kurtzman) will allow each subsequent chapter the right time to find the perfect cast, filmmakers and vision to fulfill it.  As we launch Dark Universe with Danny’s provocative theme before The Mummy and collaborate with a brilliant filmmaker like Bill to weave the story of a very modern woman in a very classic tale, we feel confident we’re off to a tremendous start.”

Emma Watson and Bill Condon on the Beauty and the Beast set Bride of Frankenstein Director & 2019 Release Date Confirmed

Emma Watson and Bill Condon on the Beauty and the Beast set

Here is the official statement from Condon, regarding the news:

“I’m very excited to bring a new Bride of Frankenstein to life on screen, particularly since James Whale’s original creation is still so potent. The Bride of Frankenstein remains the most iconic female monster in film history, and that’s a testament to Whale’s masterpiece-which endures as one of the greatest movies ever made.”

Is Condon the right director for this material? It sounds like he is. He’s well-versed enough in the Frankenstein mythology to have written and directed his first movie on the same topic, and is clearly in tune with the original vision of James Whale and what the Frankenstein characters meant to him. The “Dark Universe” concept remains untested, however, as the release of the first film in the series, The Mummy, is a month away. Casting will be crucial as well.

NEXT: Can Non-Superhero Cinematic Universes Work?

Source: Universal Pictures

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