Elizabeth Banks discovers the terrifying truth about her adopted alien son in the second trailer for James Gunn's superhero horror film, Brightburn. The Guardians of the Galaxy director had originally planned to reveal Brightburn's title and trailer last July at San Diego Comic-Con, before Disney infamously fired him from Guardians of the Galaxy 3 when his old offensive joke tweets resurfaced. Sony, which is distributing the project, subsequently delayed the film from November 2018 to May 2019 and held off on unveiling the title until Brazil's Comic Con Experience, back in December.
Brightburn is based on an idea that Gunn co-created with his brother Brian and cousin Mark. The latter pair went on to write the film's actual script, with Gunn producing and his trusted collaborator David Yarovesky (the Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 "Inferno" music video) calling the shots as director. Sony dropped the first Brightburn trailer during the movie's CCXP panel, but hasn't done a whole lot of marketing for the horror-thriller since then. That changes today, with the release of some additional footage.
IGN exclusively premiered the new trailer for Brightburn online this morning. You can check it out in the space below.
Where the first Brightburn trailer was a pretty clear-cut homage to the trailers for Zack Snyder's Superman movie Man of Steel, the new promo dives a little deeper into the film's original storyline. Based on the footage, the horror-thriller starts out the same way as the Superman origin story, with a pod carrying an infant alien crash-landing near a small American town and a childless couple (Banks and David Denman) adopting the non-earthling as their own. The twist, however, is that the child - who's raised and passed off as an ordinary human boy named Brandon (Jackson A. Dunn) - responds to bullies at school and his status as an outcast by fashioning a super-villain persona for himself (namely, Brightburn), as opposed to trying to use his super-human powers to do good.
All in all, the Brightburn trailers have done a nice job of selling the movie's premise and relying more on truly horrifying moments (like Brandon crushing a child's hand) to sell the film, as opposed to cheap jump scares. At the same time, it's not clear yet if the movie has anything new to say or covers different ground than other evil child horror-thrillers (like The Omen) before it. Indeed, super-powers aside, Brightburn looks surprisingly similar to last month's The Prodigy, especially in the way it focuses on a mother who really struggles to acknowledge that her child might not be entirely good. Still, the mashup of evil kid tropes and superheroes alone is enough to keep us interested for the time being.
- Brightburn (2019) release date: May 24, 2019