little monsters

Universal continues to go all-in on ways to revive their classic Universal Monsters. The latest: Little Monsters, an all-ages approach to the monsters coming from Josh Cooley, director of Toy Story 4. Plot details are slim, but the project is described as “a live-action hybrid monster feature” that’s also “a love letter to classic Hollywood and the history of filmmaking with a story that takes a multi-generational approach to the monsters.”

THR has the scoop on Little Monsters, a new family-friendly film that will somehow incorporate Universal Monsters. Josh Cooley, director of Toy Story 4, is set to write and direct the project, which is based on the artistic outlines and character designs of concept artist Crash McCreery which “takes cues from the studio’s rich almost 100-year history of monster movies.”

Universal has had hopes to revive their Universal Monsters for years. A recent attempt to bring the characters back from the grave was The Mummy in 2017, starring Tom Cruise. The plan was for that to kick-off a cinematic universe called The Dark Universe, but as we all know by now, that didn’t work out. The film underperformed and was torn apart by critics, and Universal eventually gave up on their Dark Universe plan.

Instead, they regrouped and teamed up with Blumhouse. The new approach involves standalone films with their own unique stories. The first film to get things going was this year’s The Invisible Man, which ended up being a critical and commercial success. Since then, Universal has put together plans for other monster movies including Paul Feig’s Dark Army, Dexter Fletcher’s Renfield, Elizabeth Banks’ Invisible Woman, Matt Stawski’s The Monster Mash, Karyn Kusama’s Dracula, and The Wolfman, which will star Ryan Gosling and be directed by The Invisible Man director Leigh Whannell.

I’m a hardcore fan of the Universal Monsters, so I can’t complain about a sudden revival like this. While Little Monsters doesn’t sound like the most appealing entry on the list, I do appreciate that Universal is attempting to cover these characters from multiple angles, be it in the form of R-rated adult movies, or films aimed at the whole family.

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