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Alex Kurtzman reflects on "painful" experience of The Mummy

Who would’ve thought that a cinematic franchise akin to the Marvel Cinematic Universe around a series of classic horror movie monsters would ever be a bomb? Certainly not Universal Pictures, who pumped hundreds of millions into kicking off their shared universe of horror/action movies, attempting to launch things off with the Tom Cruise-led THE MUMMY. Of course, we all know what happened there, and after the movie arrived to horrific reception and box office the Dark Universe is basically dead and buried, and now MUMMY director Alex Kurtzman has opened up about the whole experience.

Kurtzman, the showrunner on STAR TREK: DISCOVERY – which is gearing up for season two – was speaking to THR recently when he was asked about the failure of MUMMY. Kurtzman reflected on the “painful” experience, confirming that he is no longer involved with the development of the series and that he has no idea what’s happening with future movies.

The Mummy wasn't what I wanted it to be. I'm no longer involved in that and have no idea what's going on with it. I look back on it now [and] what felt painful at the time ended up being an incredible blessing for me. I learned that I need to follow my own instincts, and when I can't fully do that, I don't think I can succeed. Those films are beautiful because the monsters are broken characters, and we see ourselves in them. I hope those are the movies that they make; I want to see them.

Kurtzman, along with FAST & FURIOUS scribe Chris Morgan, was at one point spearheading the series, the two working together to develop other movies like THE CREATURE FROM THE BLACK LAGOON, VAN HELSING, FRANKENSTEIN and more. Universal was so confident, in fact, that they unveiled the Dark Universe logo before the premiere of THE MUMMY, along with a cast photo of actors Cruise, Sofia Boutella (Ahmanet in MUMMY), Russell Crowe (Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde), Johnny Depp, and Javier Bardem, the latter two meant to star as Invisible Man and Frankenstein, respectively.

In the end, THE MUMMY was DOA and made only $80 million domestically and over $400 worldwide, which isn’t chump change, but with a budget between $150-200 million and a score of bad reception in its wake, Universal knew this Universe was soon crumbling and would take a miracle to get people invested in. Thus, no movies seem to be in development, and offices meant to house the DU production are reportedly empty.

We will never know what the DU was going to look like, or how Universal will tinker with their slate of monster movies. Chances are slim they will just let them sit there, so maybe we will see more movies in that world in a few years once stench of MUMMY failure is gone. Jason Blum of Blumhouse has expressed interest in handling the series, so maybe this ship just needs a new captain. At least Kurtzman has learned from the experience and seems to have found a better groove with a franchise in STAR TREK. 

Source: THR

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