Published On: Fri, Nov 4th, 2016

Screenwriter Jon Spaihts talks ‘The Mummy’ development, ‘Van Helsing’ set in present day

While promoting his work on Doctor Strange and the upcoming film Passengers, screenwriter Jon Spaihts is still very busy and spoke about the work on Universal’s The Mummy.

“Yeah, there have been a lot of artists on that one, but I was the first writer on. I did a bunch of drafts. Then I co-wrote a bunch of drafts with the director, Alex Kurtzman, a lovely guy.”

Spaihts is credited on the script for Doctor Strange, along with director Scott Derrickson and C. Robert Cargill and his long-in-development original tale Passengers finally comes to theaters this December. Universal’s first reboot arrives next summer with an all-star cast.

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“I’ve had a lot to do with the shaping of it,” he told Den of Geek. “It is both a horror movie and an action adventure movie. It’s horror adventure, which is a genre I love…I think there’s a real homage in it to the kind of original Boris Karloff Mummy movies, the classic Universal monster pictures, but of course, those have been updated to the modern possibilities of cinema and the modern sensibilities.”

The Mummy stars Tom Cruise as well as Star Trek Beyond’s Sofia Boutella as the title creature.

Spaihts is part of the The Universal Monsters Universe creative team and he spoke to Collider about the Van Helsing project.

“[Van Helsing is] a new creation, so it doesn’t owe much of a debt to prior films. But it is still a very romantic departure from the character as incepted in Bram Stoker’s novel, Dracula, where [he] was a Dutch doctor who figures out a very surprising answer to an odd medical question. This is a monster hunter with encyclopedic knowledge. It’s set in the present day and it’s just filled with good stuff I’m not allowed to talk about. But I’m very excited about this new incarnation of Van Helsing, and I hope that as the Universal Monsters Cinematic Universe begins to take flight, we’ll see him cropping up in other stories, as well.”

Speaking on the inspiration from the original films, Spaihts embellished on the tone and confirmed that the movies will be bringing the scares the audiences.

“Even to go back to the original Universal Monster movies with Lon Chaney and Boris Karloff, they were not really terrifying even then. Maybe sensibilities were different and people were easier to scare at the time. But [those classic films were] slow; they’re parlor stories for the most part — not terrifying in modern terms. [Now] we’ve gotten really good at scaring people in movies. So, the nice thing about The Mummy is that it has the swash-buckling action-adventure character of a modern epic action movie, but it’s legit terrifying. It will scare you.”

The Mummy comes to theaters on June 9. 2017.

Tom Cruise and AnnaBelle Wallis on set of "The Mummy" photo published by Coming Soon

Tom Cruise and AnnaBelle Wallis on set of “The Mummy” photo published by Coming Soon



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About the Author

- Stephen is a contributor and writer on The Dispatch. Stephen is the founder and editor for the Steven Spielberg Fan Club website and contributes to pop culture stories on The Dispatch, especially upcoming movie news. Beginning in 2016, Stephen took the role of Managing Editor for the Tampa Dispatch.

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