In addition to a female-led reboot on the small screen, Van Helsing is getting revamped on the feature film side of things as well. Per Variety, Prometheus and Doctor Strange screenwriter Jon Spaihts has been tasked with co-writing a reboot for the vampire hunter alongside The Thing remake screenwriter Eric Heisserer for Universal Pictures. The studio is in the midst of mapping out a series of interconnected films set within its “monster” universe, kicking off with a The Mummy reboot directed by Alex Kurtzman.
The ever-busy Kurtzman, who recently signed on to produce a new Star Trek TV series, is overseeing the development of this Universal Monsters Universe with longtime Fast & Furious screenwriter Chris Morgan. The two assembled a “writers room” of screenwriters including Noah Hawley (Fargo), Aaron Guzikowski (Prisoners), and Ed Solomon (Now You See Me) last year to help break and craft stories for a series of films, including Dracula, Frankenstein, The Invisible Man, and The Bride of Frankenstein.
At the time the writers room was assembled, Van Helsing was also on the to-do list, but it’s unclear if one of those writers took a stab at the screenplay or if Universal is just now getting around to mapping it out. Kurtzman’s Mummy reboot will take place in present day, but it’s unclear where Van Helsing will fit into the universe timeline-wise.
Indeed, we know basically nothing about this interconnected universe play because nothing has come to fruition yet. The Mummy is slated for release on March 24, 2017, and it appears as though that film is finally headed towards a production start as we recently learned that Kurtzman and the studio are mulling a gender swap for the titular monster. Kurtzman and Morgan will produce Van Helsing, so they’re intimately involved in this film’s development as well.
Spaihts originated the screenplay that became Prometheus, but he’s also worked on Marvel’s Doctor Strange and scripted the upcoming Jennifer Lawrence/Chris Pratt sci-fi love story Passengers. He also penned The Mummy for Kurtzman, so clearly Kurtzman is happy with Spaihts’ take on this monster universe. Heisserer, meanwhile, most recently penned Sicario director Denis Villeneuve’s upcoming sci-fi film Story of Your Life.
When will Van Helsing come to fruition, where will it take place, and will it be the follow-up to The Mummy? At this point we can only guess, but Universal is clearly still committed to making this monster universe thing happen.