The Mummy

What Makes the Monster Special: Imhotep is an Ancient Egyptian high priest who was tortured, mummified, and buried alive for his sacrilegious reanimation attempt. After being revived by a foolish archeology team, Imhotep can “use years of power and strength to control others in person and through a looking pool from afar, causing both attraction to him, and death to those he wishes it upon.” Souls are inhabited, trances fixed, and some old-school puppeteering carried out (among other ritualistic attacks).

The Director: Joe Lynch

Why This Director is a Perfect Fit: Below you’re going to hear pleas to leave Brendan Fraser’s The Mummy franchise as the only action iteration (we don’t speak of Tom Cruise’s attempt), which I validate and respect – even though I hold a different opinion. Keep the adventuring, keep the Indiana Jones bravado, and let a filmmaker like Joe Lynch go wild. Relics, incantations, body possession – stuff it all in with a grand Egyptian expedition and ruinous action sequences. If there’s one guy that can handle both with a severe genre punch, it’s Lynch.

His “Worksploitation” Dante’s Inferno riff Mayhem filled in a final blank for me that assured he could stage manic action. Don’t get me wrong, Salma Hayek kicks all sorts of ass in Everly. Lynch was just always known as the splatter guy behind Wrong Turn 2 and zombie carnage in Chillerama, but those two titles mixed with Knights Of Badassdom’s fantasy barbarism (albeit not Lynch’s cut, Matt types with furious fingers) leads my assertion that he could resurrect Imhotep for a new generation of terror. Desecrated corpses, massive bedeviled set pieces, dusty mysticism and all.

Jonathan Barkan – Jordan Peele: Peele has shown in Get Out that he can accurately portray what it’s like for two cultures and societies to clash against each other with horrifying results. The Mummy is the perfect place to do that once again while simultaneously highlighting what makes every culture’s traditions and rites fascinating and personal.

Anya Stanley – David Bruckner: A creature-centric film confronting horrors of the past requires a filmmaker who is intimately acquainted with the same, and as such I think The Ritual‘s David Bruckner deserves a swing at bat.

Ariel Fisher – Kathryn Bigelow and Neil Druckmann: Stephen Sommers gave us The Mummy we deserved: an action-adventure laced with the perfect balance of horror, comedy, and romance. The idea of divorcing that property from the excitement we’ve come to associate it with feels like a sin, hence why video game writer and director Neil Druckmann would be the perfect fit. Between the adventure and excitement of the Uncharted games and the horror of The Last Of Us, he has the perfect sensibilities to define a new take on the classic. Given his lack of filmmaker experience, pairing him with a seasoned pro like Bigelow to show him the ropes would ensure an explosive final product.

Matt Barone – Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead: Look, I loved The Mummy as a kid, but have you watched it recently? Easily the dullest Universal Monster movie, and that’s because its story is so generic, and the mummy itself isn’t very scary. This one is essentially a blank slate for filmmakers to run wild with, and as all of their films have proven, Benson and Moorhead have genre sensibilities wholly their own. I have no clue what sort of narrative renovations they’d bring to something as inherently bland as The Mummy would be, but I’d love to find out.

Chris Evangelista – Panos Cosmatos: Please, for the love of god, don’t make another Mummy like the Tom Cruise film. And while I enjoy the Brendan Fraser Mummy from the ‘90s, I don’t want more of that, either. I want an occult-driven, eerie version of this story, and I just keep picturing all the weird religious iconography scattered through Panos CosmatosMandy, and then envisioning that transferred over to a Mummy movie.

Marisa MirabalRobert Eggers: Creating an accurate period piece that relies on tone, symbolic set, and accurate costume design is no easy task. However, Robert Eggers was able to evoke all of these components in his directorial debut, The Witch. His background in production design and disturbing historical atmosphere could really unwrap the true horrors of this film.

Haleigh Foutch – John Krasinski: All due respect to the subdued tone of the classic film, but the truth is my heart yearns for another rollicking Mummy adventure like the ones I grew up with in the 90s. It wouldn’t be a surprise if Universal ultimately takes an entirely different approach considering the recent Tom Cruise-led action-adventure reboot just killed the Dark Universe, but after what he did with A Quiet Place, I’d love to see John Krasinski put his Spielbergian spin on a throwback Mummy adventure. And hey, if he and Emily Blunt co-starred as adventurous archaeologists who wind up in the Mummy’s crosshairs, that wouldn’t be the worst thing either.

Kalyn Corrigan – Andrea Arnold: The director of American Honey and Big Little Lies is the perfect person to establish breathtaking atmospheric romanticism, and then slyly hint at the horror festering within. I would love to see Arnold bring her specific sense of humanity to The Mummy.

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