(Newswire.net — November 12, 2017) –Universal Studios, owned by Comcast attempted to follow Marvel’s footsteps and launch a cinematic universe of its own. The first installment in the series was this years The Mummy.
Their plan was to have a series of interconnected films based on the old Universal Monster film series. The modern reboots would be action adventures while maintaining a dark horror theme.
The Mummy only managed to gross a worldwide total of $409.1 million against a reported production and marketing budged of $345 million. Even though the total might seem fine Hollywood accounting is a complex issue. What you need to consider is that most movies need to earn around twice their budget to break even. This is due to the fact that not all of the money goes back to the studio producing the film.
Especially troubling is the fact that this was supposed to be first film in a franchise, with the studio hoping for both critical and financial success. With a lukewarm reception on their initial attempt further projects are harder to get off the ground.
Despite the poor performance of The Mummy studio heads were still willing to carry on in their attempts to launch a movie franchise.
Cinematic universes and interconnected films act as a guarantee on returns for studios, so most major film companies are trying to replicate Marvel’s formula in hopes of success.
The next film was supposed to be a Bride of Frankenstein remake starring Angelina Jolie as the bride and Javier Bardem as the titular monster. Production for the film was postponed in October.
Universal’s first attempt at starting a cinematic universe was actually back in 2014 with Dracula Untold starring Luke Evans. Due to the poor reception of the film the studio distanced itself from the project, claiming that the film is not a canon part of the Dark Universe.
On November 8, the two men who were the driving force behind The Mummy, director and producer Alex Kurtzman and writer-producer Chris Morgan, departed to do other projects.
Kurtzman is focusing on producing shows for the small screen for CBS, currently producing Star Trek: Discovery.
Morgan is writing a spinoff for the Fast and Furious franchise.
With both men departing the monster movie franchise, there is little hope for further films.
Universal is now considering offering the intellectual property license to other filmmakers.
Peter Cramer, Universal’s president of production said “We are not rushing to meet a release date and will move forward with these films when we feel they are the best versions of themselves,” adding “There’s no way to give up on this. This is Universal’s legacy.”