‘Spawn’ Reboot Aiming for 2014 Shoot; Will be a Horror Movie, Not a Superhero Movie

Published 11 months ago by , Updated August 27th, 2013 at 9:31 pm,

Spawn reboot filming in 2014 Spawn Reboot Aiming for 2014 Shoot; Will be a Horror Movie, Not a Superhero Movie

Thanks to the ongoing superhero craze, comic book adaptations have been flying off the development shelves and into production, for better or worse, and it certainly seems to be a profitable path to take. Last year, three of the top ten highest-grossing movies released were comic book adaptations, and series like The Walking Dead and Arrow are fast becoming tent-pole shows for their respective networks.

However, while heroes like Thor and Captain America are building their own franchises within the Marvel movie universe and the Man of Steel is already gearing up for another fight in Superman vs. Batman, the less kid-friendly comic book characters have had a tougher time of it. Standalone movies for Deadpool, Venom and Daredevil are all either treading water or sinking to the bottom, due to their hopeful screenwriters and stars trying to push for R-rated superhero movies.

Todd McFarlane’s movie reboot of his comic creation Spawn is another project that’s been talked about for many years, first as a sequel to the 1997 movie which starred Michael Jai White in the lead role, then later as a full reboot. Now it seems that Spawn could be the R-rated anti-hero to lead the comic book bad boy revolution, as McFarlane says that he’s set deadlines to turn in a script by the end of the year, and to begin filming in 2014.

Speaking to The Gate, McFarlane admitted that what has recently been slowing down Spawn‘s development is his own preoccupation, rather than lack of interest from studios or financiers. Ever since Jamie Foxx, who will soon be starring as Electro in The Amazing Spider-Man 2, admitted at Comic-Con that he’s “aggressively pursuing” the lead role in Spawn, the weight of an Oscar-winning actor has been on Spawn’s side. All that McFarlane needs to do now is finish the script:

“The thing that keeps slowing it down is that the negotiation I’ve done is I write, produce, direct, but I’ve got to push a lot of my other endeavors off to the side so I can just get tunnel vision on it. Everybody at my company is now going, ‘We’ve got to find Todd the time to finish all this.’”

Since the titular character of Spawn, also known as Al Simmons, burns to death in a fiery inferno before returning to Earth as a disfigured but extremely deadly hellspawn, there’s plenty in the source material that could earn an R rating in a faithful movie adaptation. However, since movies with more mature ratings inevitably snip off some of the potential box office take from younger audiences, this would make Spawn more of a financial risk.

Spawn comic panel Spawn Reboot Aiming for 2014 Shoot; Will be a Horror Movie, Not a Superhero Movie

When Deadpool screenwriters Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick pitched their R-rated movie, they argued that the risks of an R rating could be offset by making the movie for a modest $50 million, and McFarlane seems to have something similar in mind for Spawn:

“I think it’s a quick shoot. It’s not going to be a giant budget with a lot of special effects, it’s going to be more of a horror movie and a thriller movie, not a superhero one. I’ve got so many people phoning now that I’ve got to get it done. I’ve made some promises to people this year.”

If Dan Aykroyd’s ongoing Ghostbusters 3 campaign has taught us anything, it’s that the driving forces behind potential movies aren’t always reliable when it comes to quoting potential shooting dates or release plans. With that in mind, McFarlane did say that his current goal is to deliver a finished script to his producers by the end of the year, and to begin filming in 2014. He also managed to talk up the interest from Foxx as much as possible, without actually naming the actor:

“We’ve had some big names… come to the office and go ‘We want to be in it.’ Sometimes they give me their pitch, I give them my pitch, I go, ‘We can get in it, this is how it goes’, and so those types of actors – Academy Award guys – they’re going, ‘As soon as that script’s done, we’re going.’ So once we get this thing done, we’ll get it off the ground with some big names.”

With all these plurals floating around, McFarlane almost makes it sound like he’s been approached by multiple Oscar-winning (or Oscar-nominated) actors who are all fighting over the role of Spawn. Perhaps that is true, but Foxx’s name alone should be enough to get studios interested in a Spawn reboot with a reasonably low budget and an emphasis on horror and thriller elements rather than caped superhero antics (though Spawn does have a cape, so he’ll fit in with his mainstream comic book movie buddies in that respect).

Do you have faith that a Spawn reboot is really on the way, or will you only believe it when the cameras start rolling? Tell us if you like the idea of a scary movie approach with Foxx in the lead.


If Spawn does begin filming in 2014 then it could be in theaters by 2015. We’ll keep you updated on any further news.

Source: The Gate [via THR]

TAGS: spawn


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  1. First one was dorky…why do we need this?

    • Mishandled but far from dorky. More cheesy if anything. You are probably too young, but Spawn was a huge anti hero in the 90s, and very relevant today. Its a remake and reboot like all the other projects who have original content of the same substance before it. So why is it not deserving of a revisit, especially if done properly.

      • Actually, I am going to be 56 this October…I just think of myself as 25 years old on rocket fuel (I look like late 30s, early 40s at the most! Amen to that!). I will say I liked the looks of my son’s Spawn action figure costume (black, red, brown; that looked sharp). And actually, looking at your handle “Chicago Guiy”, that’s coincidental, as while I now live in upper Michigan, I originally am from the Chicago suburbs (Hanover Park, Schaumburg, Hoffman Estates, Streamwood, Wheaton, Bensenville over the years).

    • Watch the HBO animated Spawn series and the last thing you will say or think is dorky! One of the best animated shows of all time. Spawn should get another chance to prove how bad ass he is. If done correctly in tone it could be epic.

      • No doubt. If they would have made the movie as series and grimey as the cartoon it would be a cult classic right now. The only two good things about the movie were Jai White and Leguzamo

      • I agree but the thing that mcfarlane is trying to do is make spawn like a ghost to other people. Spawn will not actually be the main character we are not going to see the movie through his experiences like the first movie. It will be other people experiencing him hence why it is a horror movie. That is why I am worried about this one. I have been waiting so long for a spawn remake but I still want him to be the main guy but just make the plot better than the original. Less burnt face and more mask too.

      • Spawn’s next movie should follow that series cause it was based off the comics. The last thing he says in the series was “I want my humanity back” yet cut off cause people though it was too much for that time. in 1997 the movie sucked and made spawn look like some punk b**** of satan. they should bring back th origanal voice of Spawn being, David Keith and show how it is really done.

    • Because the first one was dorky… lol/P :)

  2. A lot of people give McFarlane a hard time but people tend to forget that the first 50 issues of Spawn were amazing.

    Any movie and any project could be incredible or disastrous, it all depends on the force behind the project and how many cooks in the kitchen.

    So if Todd says he’s trying something new, I’d be interested to see it, and for good reason. His comic book at one point was the golden age of comics. This project would essentially have to be an extension of that.

    Wake up and smell the Jamie Foxx

    • right on pablo estivez

      • Writing/drawing comics and DIRECTING a movie are two vastly different things.

        • I completely agree.

          It’s interesting. This will make for a good case study.
          It could go very well: original creator with complete control develops epic success film, or horribly horribly wrong: ego maniac ruins own franchise by ignoring the creative power of others.

          Hmmmmmm… This does sound familiar

          • Georgey boy

          • I think I know what you’re talking about. If I remember right, it happened a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away.

          • How would you go wrong if you were the individual who dreamt it up in the first place?

            • In case you did not know, McFarland messed up the first one.

  3. love spawn i hope it dont mess up movie storyline wise

  4. FINALLY! I’ve been waiting for a proper Spawn movie since the 90′s. The FX in the original obviously did not hold up to the test of time. They were dated almost immediately, and trying to watch it now is just painful. I’m glad a studio finally took another look at this property, Spawn is my favorite comic, I’m looking forward to this.

  5. Im in

  6. Thank you H. Shaw Williams for referencing Dan Aykroyd. I’ve been saying that McFarlane and him must have the same publicist. I guess we’ll see if the next Ghostbusters 3 rumor comes out in a month.


    • I guess toy sales are slow.

      Todd should get into vodka

  7. Spawn will be amazing, in the way it was always meant to be seen. Jamie Foxx would be an amazing lead.

    • Please mother of mercy do not allow Jamie Fox to defile this.

  8. I am so ready for a Spawn reboot! Spawn is one of my all time favorites and McFarlane is a genius. I think they should have Michael Jai White do Al Simmons again, his character was awesome but the problem wasn’t him it was the special effects and all that before. This one needs more action and horror elements and Jamie Foxx is a great actor yes but MJW is Al Simmons he played the character so well why throw the bone to some other dog when you can keep the same one who worked great? Either way I AM going to see it when it comes out and it NEEDS to be R Rated! Venom and Deadpool do need to be made but I think Venom should be in the hands of the best…Todd McFarlane! He created the monster….lets see him bring it to life!!!

  9. If Michael Jai White doesn’t reprise the role. I’d love to see Jamie Foxx as Spawn.

    I’d actually like to see Michael Jai White as Luke Cage.

  10. Redbox.

  11. I am not in favor of this.

  12. “Spawn”…sounds like fish-eggs!

    • Spawn sounds like caviar? Keep trying…

  13. I have faith in many things, none of which have anything to do with deadline and Todd Mcfarlane. Thats like saying you can get good Italian pizza in your grocers freezer.

  14. Id rather See Will smith or the rock in the role…So far he (will smiths) a great actor with not enough challenging roles outside of Ali, Iam Legend & Enemy of the state. We know he could get really big like in Ali…so the height & muscles are there. the wit & comedy are there…and the intensity seen in Iam legend & seven pounds proves will could carry a whole movie with the depression & loss required for a tragic figure like Al Simmonds.

  15. Will could get anything greenlit in hollywood he would be my go to actor.

  16. I LOVED an still. Love to listen to the SPAWN sound track .unreal masterpiece
    I like the older spawn ETC the actor an the fack as Devil s*** effects other than that it was good missing the blood an action off the comic .. Ninja turtles should be done like this DARK AN scary bloodie an RATED R ..same with deadpool !!! Hope to see the first off MANY R rated comic book movies !!!!!!

  17. Please no Jamie Fox

  18. Spawn the animated series was a work of genius and captured the comics perfectly, if they can pull out a movie half as good as the series and comics then it will beat the piss out of superhero movie industry and will hopefully pave the way for more R rated and adult graphic novel based films

  19. Not liking the idea of Foxx. Not his kind of role at all.

  20. If Jamie Foxx gets the role as Spawn. Then I’m going to shoot myself.


  22. Jamie Foxx, though?? He just doesn’t scream Spawn to me. Now if he said Idris Alba, then I’d be completely sold. But I’m not going to rant and complain like some comic book fans do. I’ll just sit back, and see how this pans out. Hopefully it will be epic

  23. Not sure bout Foxx…but you never know. Will Smith is an interesting idea I could see it but not on $10 mil budget. Probably better off digging up a no name with talent. Horror yes…no action unacceptable. I can accept gore as substitute for action but not tasteful please realistic is fine but tasteful gore will not do. Either way I’m intrigued by the idea Spawn is the only comic I ever read regularly. .Venom and Carnage occasionally and the rare Batman (yes I see a pattern). I’ll check it out I’d like to see him pull it off but wouldn’t mind him sharing the load a bit with the making of and allowing a bit of the over the top stuff we see in the other comic movies…the answer is in the hybridization of the two R-rated horror with all the action we see from the others…that I think would be awesome..OH!!! And at least one real nasty looking demon fight.

  24. If they make jamie fox spawn it will end spawn

  25. I’m a huge fan of mcfarlane’s work, and the hbo spawn series is still to date the greatest american animated series of all time and I’d love to see a new adaptation darker than the original live action film. I can’t wait, hopefully the script gets completed and production gets green lighted

  26. I want Jamie Foxx to paly as Spawn in the Spawn reboot movie and action figure toys.

  27. I was about to post “Shut up and take my money!”, until I realized this article is 10 months old.

    D ck move, bro. D ck move.

  28. No Foxx for this please…it simply just wont work !!

  29. Djimon Hounsou.

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