The first-look images are here for Universal and Blumhouse's reboot of The Invisible Man. For years now, Universal has been trying to find a way to bring its classic monsters like The Mummy and Dracula back to the big screen. They've already made two attempts to relaunch their horror properties as a shared universe (first with Dracula Untold in 2014, then again with the Dark Universe in 2017), but neither of those efforts panned out. Now, however, they're mixing things up by taking producer Jason Blum's low-budget approach instead.
Up first, Blumhouse and Universal are putting a new spin on The Invisible Man. The character's been around on the big screen since 1933 and was previously set to be played by Johnny Depp in the Dark Universe. Instead, he's being portrayed by The Haunting of Hill House actor Oliver Jackson-Cohen in the upcoming reboot from writer-director Leigh Whannell. In this version, though, The Invisible Man isn't the star, as evidenced by these new photos.
EW unveiled the first images from The Invisible Man online today, with its trailer expected to follow very soon. Elisabeth Moss stars in the film as Cecilia Kass, a woman who's trapped in an abusive relationship with a wealthy and brilliant scientist (Jackson-Cohen) when she escapes one night and goes into hiding, with the help of her sister (Harriet Dyer), her childhood friend (Aldis Hodge), and his daughter (Storm Reid). Speaking to EW, Whannell explained why he took this story approach to rebooting The Invisible Man. You can read his quote below, followed by the images.
“The image of the Invisible Man in the floating trench coat and the floating sunglasses is one that is clearly etched into the public consciousness. I wanted to kind of get away from that and make something that was really modern, really grounded, or as grounded as you can be when you’re dealing with a film called The Invisible Man. Just something that was really tense and scary in a way The Invisible Man hasn’t been before..."
The film's plot really kicks into gear when Cecilia is informed her abuser has committed suicide and left a significant portion of his fortune to her. But as suggested by these images, she gradually comes to suspect his death was faked and her ex is now stalking her, having invented some technology that allows him to be invisible. Unfortunately, everyone else presumes Cecilia is simply traumatized by everything that happened and doesn't believe her, even as a series of increasingly disturbing incidents suggests she and her loved ones are in mortal danger. By the look of things, Cecilia eventually winds up being committed for her claims, in spite of the mounting evidence that she's absolutely correct.
Story-wise, The Invisible Man sounds like an intriguingly creepy new spin on the franchise, and certainly one befitting of being released in the post-#MeToo era (where stories warning about the dangers of not believing women are finally being told in greater numbers). This isn't the first time Whannell has made a horror movie about a woman confronting her abuser either, as he previously dealt with that theme in his script for the fourth Insidious movie, The Last Key. Similarly, the filmmaker tackled related ideas involving dangerous technology in last year's cult thriller Upgrade, and was largely applauded for his efforts. Combine that with a dramatic performance from a powerhouse actor like Moss and The Invisible Man reboot sounds pretty promising right now.
- The Invisible Man (2020) release date: Feb 28, 2020