The upcoming R-rated Hellboy reboot has been given a working title. Fans were no doubt pleasantly surprised Monday when Hellboy creator Mike Mignola tweeted that a new Hellboy movie was in the works. And while it won’t be a third film from auteur Guillermo del Toro and won’t star Ron Perlman as the titular character, it does already have a director in place with Game of Thrones helmer Neil Marshall and will likely star Stranger Things standout David Harbour, who is in negotiations to join the film as Hellboy.
More details have been released since Mignola’s tweet. According to THR, the new Hellboy film will film under the working title Hellboy: Rise of the Blood Queen, with a script by Andrew Cosby, Christopher Golden and Mignola. Millennium Films is backing the reboot, and reportedly is seeking Larry Gordon and Lloyd Levin (Watchmen) to produce, along with Dark Horse Entertainment’s Mike Richardson.
The casting of Harbour as Hellboy is no doubt a major breakthrough for the veteran actor, who has mostly played supporting roles during his 15 years in film and TV. His acclaimed turn as Jim Hopper on the Netflix series Stranger Things got him on a lot of radars on Hollywood, though, and clearly the actor is excited about the prospects of stepping in to play Hellboy. The actor alluded to his pending deal to join the film in a tweet Monday night, which pictured a pane of the iconic Dark Horse Comics character:
Harbour will inevitably be compared to Perlman, but as far as the physical requirements of the part, there’s no doubt that the actor has the imposing frame (he’s nearly 6-foot-3) and square-jawed look to embody the character. Created by Mignola in 1993, Hellboy followed the exploits of the demon from hell antihero, who was raised by a professor, eventually to become a cigar-chomping occultist detective for the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense.
While del Toro found a strong cult following with his two Hellboy movies, they both achieved only modest success at the box office. Hellboy, released in 2004, earned $59.6 million at the domestic box office and $39.6 million for a global total of $99.6 million; while 2008’s Hellboy: The Golden Army snagged $75.9 million domestically and $84.4 million in foreign territories for a worldwide take of $160.3 million. Despite support from fans, del Toro’s attempt to get Hellboy 3 made fell short, leading the director to abandon the project altogether.
Of course, with an R-rated adaptation out of the gate, Millennium’s Hellboy: Rise of the Blood Queen will no doubt have the support of fans who long for a grittier vision of Hellboy, but it also comes with the limitations at the box office by potentially cutting out members of the demographic under the age of 17. Millennium was no doubt empowered by the recent successes of the R-rated superhero hits Deadpool and Logan at the box office.
Hellboy: Rise of the Blood Queen does not have a release date as of this writing. We’ll keep you updated on the latest information.