It seems like just yesterday that director Jon M. Chu became attached to the long-gestating Masters of the Universe reboot. At the time, the move seemed more than a bit odd, given the filmmaker’s previous directorial efforts included two films in the dance-centric Step Up series and a documentary feature about Justin Bieber. True, Chu was already in production on G.I.: Retaliation, but with that film’s reception up in the air, it remains to be seen whether or not Chu is the right man to bring He-Man and the kingdom of Grayskull to life.
Like G.I. Joe, Masters of the Universe is a franchise near and dear to an entire generation of children who grew up with the 1980s animated series, its numerous action figures and the 1987 big-screen adaptation starring Dolph Lundgren. Can Chu successfully update the franchise to appeal to longtime fans as well as younger viewers who may not even be familiar with the likes of Skeletor, Man-At-Arms and Orko?
According to IGN, the reason we haven’t heard any concrete details on Chu’s Masters of the Universe is precisely because he and his creative team are taking the time to hone their approach to the material. Here’s what he had to say:
“We’re still early, but we’re deep in experimenting. This is the most fun phase for me because we get to try everything we’ve ever wanted to try in ‘Masters,’ and then we get to throw out all the things that don’t work – which is most of it – to know what our right tone is, where we’re going to head with it. And it’s a very important phase because it shows you the direction we’re going to go in the future. We’re very early. We don’t know a lot yet, other than we’re playing around having a lot of fun.”
The fact that Chu is “experimenting” with the franchise is certainly a good sign that he’s concerned about respecting the franchise’s history and creating a satisfying film for the existing fanbase. Masters of the Universe is a world full of magic, mythology and an endless cast of characters, both human and supernatural in nature. Without the right take on the material, the resulting film could end up in disaster.
Case in point, Jonathan Liebesman’s Ninja Turtles – another cherished property with its roots in the 1980s – has already suffered criticism from fans (and co-creator Peter Laird) due to the filmmakers’ decision to change the character’s mutant origins. A new Masters of the Universe may take a bit longer to hit theaters than that film, but this slow-and-steady approach to production may ultimately be in its favor.
What would you like to see in Chu’s Masters of the Universe? Let us know in the comments below.
Stay tuned to Screen Rant for the latest on Masters of the Universe.