A lot of people probably aren't familiar with the name Vincenzo Natali (Cube), but he's the writer/director behind this summer's "science gone wrong" horror film Splice, which stars Adrien Brody (Predators) and Sarah Polley (Dawn of the Dead remake) and is being produced by Guillermo del Toro (The Hobbit).
If you caught the Splice trailer, then you're probably already intrigued by what looks like Species for a new generation of sci-fi lovers. The trailer has its share of hokey "what have we done?" moments and cliché flash cuts of the film's hyrbid monster attacking people, but the cinematography looks appropriately chilly and there's a definite Alien-like atmosphere to the whole thing. So, fingers crossed, we have a winner on our hands.
I mention all this as backdrop for the news that Vincenzo Natali spoke to MTV over the weekend at WonderCon and expressed an interest in taking on an adaptation of the ecological comic book series Swamp Thing as his next film project. Reportedly, Natali is particularly invested in basing the film off Alan Moore's acclaimed run of the character back in the 1980s.
According to Natali:
"There are two incarnations of Swamp Thing — both of them are quite wonderful. The first one was by Len Wein and Bernie Wrightson, which was a more traditional sort of retake on classic, James Whale-style, Universal Studio horror films. Then Alan Moore reinvented the character in the early '80s, and that's actually the version that's a little more interesting to me."
Natali further expressed his love for Swamp Thing, a creature that he describes as an "ecological character quite unlike anything you've seen before. It's a comic book, but it delves into some very interesting stuff, both psychological and philosophical."
Working in Natali's favor is his newfound relationship with producer Joel Silver, one of the Warner Bros.' executives that chose to pick up and release Splice in theaters this June. Silver has expressed interest in a 3D Swamp Thing movie (oy vey) and he now has a familiar name who sounds more than willing to take on such a project.
When asked about taking on what would definitely be a studio-backed production, Natali has this to say:
"Listen, I’ve been wanting to sell my soul for a long time. It was simply that no one wanted my soul before! I’d like to make another movie soon, but it’s hard. It’s a long, slow, brutal process, and my last film was made in 2003. So yeah, I’d love to jump into something, and having had the Warner Bros. experience it’s a little like flying business class, and I don’t want to go back to coach!"
That said, it sounds like Natali isn't remotely intimidated by the prospect of helming a big-budget tentpole pic based off a comic book series with a devoted cult following. Add in the fact that Alan Moore's take on the Swamp Thing monster is revered for its intelligence and philosophical overtones and this idea sounds like it could be a perfect fit for Natali's brand of thought-provoking science fiction.
So what do you folks think? Does the idea of a Swamp Thing movie directed by Vincenzo Natali sound good? Do you want to wait and see how Splice turns out? Or does the project sound lame in the first place?
At this point there's nothing official about a possible Swamp Thing movie other than the fact that it looks more and more likely to get underway sometime in the near future.
Meanwhile, Splice hits theaters on June 4, 2010 so keep your eyes peeled.