Todd McFarlane Still Talking Spooky Indie ‘Spawn’ Movie

Published 4 years ago by

todd mcfarlane spawn movie Todd McFarlane Still Talking Spooky Indie Spawn Movie

There’s a small page of our archives here on Screen Rant that has –  for the past few years – been solely dedicated to Spawn creator Todd McFarlane talking up another movie based on his popular comic book character.

Well, Spawn the comic book is about to drop its landmark 200th issue, which means that McFarlane has been given yet another opportunity to tell us all about his unending battle to bring the next Spawn flick to a theater near you.

Here’s what we’ve heard from McFarlane for going on three years: he wants to do a “creepy, scary” Spawn movie and he wants to do it on an indie budget. He wants the character of Spawn to be an elusive and hardly-glimpsed force of nature in the film, rather than the focus. He’s written up a script and is willing to finance the picture himself…if he can’t get a studio deal.

Here’s what McFarlane is now telling Hero Complex (hint: it’s pretty much the same stuff):

Todd McFarlane: I’ve always seen Spawn as being cut from a different cloth. It’s more of an urban, psychological story that’s being told. The answer I’ve given the last few years is that Spawn should be a small-budget movie in which the only thing that’s out of the ordinary is this thing that intellectually we know as Spawn and there would only be a handful of people that see it. I call it “it” because it never talks, it’s just a force of nature. Really, the story revolves around the people who are trying to decide: “Is the ghost alive? Is the shadow actually moving?” When I give that pitch, some of the executives scratch their heads. To a lot of people, a movie where the [title] character doesn’t talk doesn’t make any sense. There have been a few movies like that. “Alien,” you know, that guy didn’t say much. Or ”Jaws,” the shark didn’t have too many speaking lines. “Jaws” is the closest example, the movie wasn’t about the shark, it’s about the people chasing the shark.

The story that I pitch is very tight, very contained, but done right. I want a movie that gets people’s hearts racing. I want to scare them. Spawn, done right, is a creepy character. Instead of a superhero who just stands there. That’s why Batman was always the coolest of all the good guys. I never had one moment of affinity for [Superman]. He was a Boy Scout right from the moment he hit the ground. He was always polite and said the right thing. I never felt like he was in danger because he could spin planets on his finger. Batman is a guy who could die if you threw him out of a window. More than that, even though he had women throwing themselves at him and millions of dollars, all he wanted to do was to wait until 3 a.m. and the pitch of black and say, “time to put the costume on and scare the bad guys.” I relate way more to that guy. Spawn is Batman untethered, without the corporation behind it. Batman without limits, Batman who kills the Joker.

There’s plenty more where this comes from, so head over to Hero Complex to read it in full.

Look, we could dogpile on McFarlane all day about the amount of talk we’ve heard about this Spawn flick – but hey, the guy’s passionate about his baby. I get that. The real question here is this: Do you think that the idea McFarlane is pitching for this Spawn flick is a good one? If so, maybe the guy should get some groundswell support for this thing; if not, then maybe it’s time he maybe thought of a different approach – say, really pushing ahead with that new animated Spawn series we heard about awhile back?

Source: Hero Complex

TAGS: Spawn
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  1. I would not be happy to go see a Spawn movie where he is not kicking the crap out of the Violator. If he doesn’t want to talk that is one thing. In fact that is the only thing that I didn’t really care for in the last one. The script as far as Spawn went was horrible. The rest of it was awesome. John Leguizamo was awesome. The Hell scenes were kinda stupid looking too.

    • Todd should shut up or put up. Spawn you only see in the shadows,he doesn’t speak,really,sounds like he doesn’t know what the f he’s talking about. I love spawn, but gave up on that clown Todd along time ago.

  2. As much as I like the idea of a new Spawn film, I think an indie approach isn’t exactly what I had in mind. It would be nice to include elements of the old HBO show, but rarely showing the character is taking Spawn out of Spawn.

  3. This would be cool I loved the other film as a kid

  4. i think they should go with the armageddon story arc make a trilogy i mean people already know who the character is mabe make it a sort of reboot sequel to the original but it should focus on spawn with a better actor have more than just the violator they could do it justice but mcfarlane for som reason has lost his touch what hes doing with the comic(spawn)and his opinion on how it should focus on sam and twitch? i mean am i the only one that hates those characters? i mean when they com up in the comic i skip past all theyre usless dialoug

    • this generation dont know nothing about Spawn actually alot of none comic book readers dont know nothing about Spawn

  5. Todd, you had your chance at making a true rendition of Spawn and you dropped the ball. You sold out and let people who have no clue what your fan based wanted to change your story and characters and water down the tone of the series. I for one will not go and see a movie called Spawn and not ever see the title character, after all he isnt Freddy Kruger, where he comes only in dreams. Either do the story right or dont do it at all.

  6. This film should definately stay with the low budget because I doubt that it would gross a lot at the box office. I thought that the first was pretty bad, but not terrible like other comic movies (Ghost Rider and Fanstastic Four for example)

  7. I think he’s got a great idea, if not an extermely difficult one to pull off. I think a sincerely scarey vibe is a great way to cast a hero. It would also put alot on creating very well fleshed out characters for the primary cast — which is where so many horror and super hero movies go wrong.

    • And you think Todd has the writing capabilities to do that? I say no.

  8. A Spawn movie where you rarely see the title character? Fail. The last movie could have been better but I still enjoyed it for the mindless action. I think White was perfect for the character but the script was horrible. Why oh why do these guys always want to water down characters with mega butt kicking powers?!

    • agreed

  9. The problem with this is: SPAWN “IS” a speaking character. Spawn IS a person/superhero with issues to deal with. Not a “force of nature” or some bullcrap… WTF!?!

    Make a movie true to the comics, because that is what the people who READ the comics want to see.

    Give us Sam and Twitch and the old blind granny! This is a personal story about a specific man with a specific tale to tell! This newfangled story arc reminds me of The Crow.

  10. seriously , I get he loves his character and all, but really he needs to stop , his idea of a spawn movie sounds horrible, it makes me wonder who has actually been writing his stuff over the years , i mean i know he has nt written much of title lately and was only partly involed the original writting as well, but his concept for the movie other then it being creepy sounds just strange.

  11. spawn was cool, when i was an angsty brooding teenager. I reread a few issues a few months ago and it really just doesn’t hold up well. Yeah, it looks pretty *er, ugly-pretty if there is such a thing* yeah its got lots of good action,but thats about it.
    I think he should just let this thing rest. The idea of making the LEAD FREAKIN CHARACTER a thing that the secondary characters talk about the whole movie is just soo odd to me.

  12. What he is purposing for Spawn, while entirely possible, is a giant gamble. It will be extremely difficult to pull off as people have been accustom to seeing everything from perspective of the hero against the villain. What he is intending for this is to be from the villain perspective being hunted by hero. The movie would be like the mobster parts of the movie The Dark Knight while the only time you see the hero is when he’s taking down/killing the criminals like the first 6 minutes of the movie Ninja Assassin. It’s original for a hero movie and I like the idea. However, while he is smart I must say I don’t think he has the directing talent to pull off what he wants done and have it be a success not just to the box office, but to fans of Spawn. If he is completely sincere about following through with this take of the movie then he should be both Screenplay Writer and Producer, have a higher budget than an indie film, and get someone else as Director who can express his vision onto film. Also, this project should not be done as a sequel, but as a reboot. If done right I would happily pay to see this.

  13. Yeah I’m not liking the idea of Spawn not saying a line at all. I mean most of the origanal animated series that was on HBO, Spawn had most of the lines. Oh and to Todd, the main character in Alien was Riply not the Xenomorphes. Even though they where important to the story too. To go low budget? Really? It’ll most likely look like crap with a cape. Oh wait no you wouldn’t even see the main character that’s right. Wanna know how to make it right with the fans Todd? Well first SHOW SPAWN, make sure Wanda, Terry, Cyan, and Wynn are in this film. Also make sure the characters look right (Terry Fitzgerald) from the first film was a white actor when the character is a strong black man. Use charaters like Sam and Twitch properly, Clown/ Violator, and how about Chapel, heck even Angela the hunter. Plus plunty of action AND dialog! Then you’ll get my mmoney.

  14. UHM…yeah they made that movie Todd, it’s called The Mothman Prophecies and it was awesome for just those reasons……sheesh.

  15. While I am not a Spawn comic book reader, The idea of Spawn has always been intriguing a Guy that ends up on the wrong side of the devil. The movie had so much potential back in the day. But today it needs a reboot. TankD is right on with an Armageddon Trilogy. That would be sweet. Bring back John Luguizamo and make the devil a talented actor. Count $$$ all the way to the bank. The indie Idea is not Spawn, even I know that.

    • i was real young when i saw the first spawn movie, i actually own it on dvd, i always liked it. Spawn in the shadow is definately kinda different although i really want to see Spawn kick demon a$$.

  16. Todd needs to take his ego down a notch. Spawn is not as important a character as he thinks it is, although he did make a good analogy with the “Batman unchained” thing.

    A low budget Indie flick? He got burned the first time so he thinks by taking money and resources out of the equation then a better film will result? Spawn needs a special effects budget. His cape is as much of a character as he is, and we don’t even need to mention the supervillains.

    Write a better story, get a better director, give it a bit of guts and keep it in perspective: it’s a second-tier superhero story, not Ghost World or American Splendour or even Defendor. Don’t pretend otherwise.

  17. hmmm

  18. Ahhh….Mcfarland, give it a gd REST…
    Your Spawn is so old, so tired…does anyone really give a s— anymore??
    What IS amusing is to see you beat this dead horse every chance you get.

  19. You must read: The Greatest White Shark Story Ever Told!
    “My Friend Michale” a true story about the Real Jaws.

  20. hmm

  21. I don’t follow the comic books series as closely as I want to, but Todd’s idea is different and may or may not work, though i believe it would be a better spin-off sequel only because I myself and I am sure many others have been waiting to see spawn back on the big screen for over 10 years and don’t just want a C**k tease but the full thing!!

    Ps: Christopher Nolan would be a dream writer/director for this :)

  22. I think Rodriguez would also. He’s pretty good with small budgets, if that’s what McFarlane is aiming for.

    I guess a crap film would be better than no film, we were promised one for a long effing time.


  24. The biggest problem is that in the cases of Jaws and Alien the title characters were villains and we were watching and for a lack of better words sympathizing with the “good guys” it is the complete opposite for spawn, in this case we are forced to attempt to build a connection with the evil characters of the spawn universe

  25. I really hope this happens. I would love to work on this film in any way possible. I have been a fan ever since the #1 issue comic book came out I STILL HAVE IT actually. Either way I think the Indie Idea is BRILLIANT and McFarlane should Fund it himself. Just like Kevin Smith is Selling RED STATE. Its a new way of producing movies. McFarlane has such a strong following that his fans alone will cover the investment after its release. Anyways I really hope this film is made either way but indie style would be another fitting genre for SPAWN

    Nazar Loun

  26. Throw your fans a bone we been loyal for years, give us something please just no more talk.

  27. If you make a spawn movie, you have to show spawn, not just his green eyes steaming in the shadows while sam and twitch stumble around the screen garnering all the focus looking like an even more cheesy and washed up lethal weapon team. But the badass murder people approach he is talking about is key, it should definitely be rated R and not skip on the brutality. The first movie played out like Batman & Robin did (the one with george clooney and the nips) and had low budget jurassic park effects. It wont be huge budget because i dont think spawn has that much buzz around him anymore, but he is my favorite, and it would be f****** dope to see an updated MUCH better effects version.