A blog at the L.A. Times reported (via Sci-Fi Wire) that Ron Howard is planning his next film project, and this week he sounded most excited about directing a big-budget adaptation of The Strange Adventures of H.P. Lovecraft, based on the Image Comics series.
Howard told the L.A. TImes:
“It very cleverly uses H.P. Lovecraft in a fictional way, but there’s some loose biographical elements. But it certainly has the flavor and the tone of Lovecraft…The character is a very young Lovecraft.”
“Look, it’s challenging, but if we get it right, it could be really original and psychologically interesting and scary in a great way. And it’s a graphic novel, this is new territory for me.”
The story, written by Mac Carter, tells the tale of how a timid Lovecraft is transformed by an ancient curse, which releases his darkest nightmares into reality, making him an unwitting god of destruction and the only person who can battle the evil he’s unleashed into the world. The book is described as one part biography, one part horror pulp, and one part fugitive thriller.
I won’t say much on why this pairing could be difficult to say the least, for Howard, known for mainstream films like Cocoon, Apollo 13, even Willow, but Sci-Fi Wire’s article made some good points:
The reason we’re afraid is because we have yet to see a definitive adaptation either of Lovecraft or his material on screen, despite some notable attempts, particularly the nasty horror movies of Stuart Gordon (Re-Animator, From Beyond). In particular, we have been dying for a proper treatment of Lovecraft’s Cthulhu Mythos.
The one promising adaptation, of course, is Guillermo del Toro’s proposed movie based on Lovecraft’s At the Mountains of Madness, but with del Toro mired in the quicksand of his Hobbit adaptations (which may be bogged down even more, if today’s news on Nikki Finke’s Deadline Hollywood is any indication), it would be at least five years until del Toro could even turn his attention to Lovecraft.
We’ll see how this all pans out, and I appreciate a filmmaker reaching out to try new creative avenues. However, a gritty and gory piece like this might need to be watered down just too much for core Lovecraft and steampunk fans to appreciate.
Speaking of From Beyond, check out the trailer for the Cult Cinema Icon below.