The Spawn reboot will be a “low-budget” superhero movie, according to one of its producers. This news follows the announcement that Todd McFarlane - the comic book creator of Spawn - has teamed up with Blumhouse Productions to write and direct a big screen adaptation of his own work. Jason Blum, who’s overseen hit after hit (Paranormal Activity, Split, Get Out) with his Blumhouse company, is onboard as a producer on the project.
McFarlane has mentioned before that his CIA-agent-turned-vengeful-demonic-antihero creation is “not the biggest role” in the Spawn reboot. He compared the film to Jaws, explaining that the cop character Twitch is Spawn’s equivalent of Sheriff Brody, who had a lot of screen-time in Steven Spielberg’s iconic shark flick because the action scenes were so expensive to shoot. The shark itself, in McFarlane’s words, “showed up at the opportune time to make the movie worthwhile” - and it sounds like his Spawn reboot will take a similar approach to its own expensive-to-showcase central character.
Speaking to Collider about the Spawn reboot, Blum corroborated MacFarlane’s Jaws statement - which pointed to a lo-fi filmmaking style without too many special effects shots - by touching on the cost that he’s expecting for the film:
This Spawn movie is a kind of superhero movie, but a very different kind of feeling superhero movie. I like the idea of low-budget superhero movies. It’s cool.
MacFarlane has previously described his vision for the new Spawn movie as “dark”, “nasty” and R-rated. It makes sense, then, that the film will not have a massive budget. After all, in making a film R-rated, you stop youngsters from watching your film via legal means. The risk of missing out on that money diminishes when the budget shrinks to match it. Fox employed this sort of approach with its X-Men spinoffs Deadpool and Logan and both films achieved major commercial/critical success.
However, although you could argue that the cult icon status of Spawn and the low-budget sensibilities of Blumhouse are a match made in heaven, having such a low budget will have one hellish downside: working from a small pot of money will make it difficult for the film to visit the dark realms frequented by Al Simmons (aka Spawn) or to showcase his manifold abilities in full.
An R-rated Spawn reboot with a massive budget and lots of special effects is probably too much to ask for, though. Perhaps, if this re-launch does well, more budget will be found for a large-scale sequel. That’s what happened with Deadpool, after all.
Keep it on Screen Rant for all the latest Spawn coverage.