"Insidious" director set to helm Universal's "Invisible Man"

Leigh Whannell made his directorial debut with "Insidious: Chapter 3", which he also acted in.

29 Jan – Writer-director Leigh Whannell has landed himself a third feature film directing gig, under a genre he's definitely comfortable with given his past works.

Having written horror materials for the big screen since 2004's "Saw", Variety brought word that Whannell is now set to direct a sci-fi horror movie for Universal Pictures.

However, it is not confirmed whether Whannell will be lending his writing and producing talents to the project, as he did with last year's "Upgrade", or he will only be helming this time around.

The movie is a remake of the "Invisible Man", one of the Universal Monsters movies to studio has been trying to get off the ground for years. It was originally meant to star Johnny Depp but it seems that the project might be using a new cast since there was no mention of the actor's name.

It will also no longer be part of the Dark Universe.

The shared cinematic universe, announced by Universal in 2017, was supposed to have included various Universal Monsters movies. However, the Tom Cruise-starring "The Mummy", the movie that was intended to kickstart the franchise, performed poorly, leading to its end before it even really begun.

Now the studio has axed the idea of connecting the monsters in one universe and will just focus on filmmaker-driven projects using classic characters from the Universal Monsters legacy.

Whannell's "Invisible Man" remake, and other upcoming Universal Monsters ones, will reportedly be "rooted in horror, with no restrictions on budget, tone, or rating."

Whannell will be reunited with Jason Blum on the project as the producer's Blumhouse Productions has a 10-year first-look deal with the studio. This is their third time working together after "Upgrade" and "Insidious: The Last Key", the horror franchise in which Whannell first made his directing debut with the third instalment, "Insidious: Chapter 3".

Since Whannell's remake will have different interpretations of the titular character and its origins, don't expect to be seeing the same thing as the original 1933 "Invisible Man" – which was adapted from H.G. Wells' 1897 novel of the same name – or its 1940 sequel "The Invisible Man Returns".

Cinema Online, 29 January 2019

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