Spawn Reboot: Everything We Know About the Blumhouse Production

We have put together Everything We Know About the Spawn Reboot, which is coming from Todd McFarlane and Blumhouse Productions

michael jai white spawn

In 1992, comic book writer and artist Todd McFarlane created a new superhero character called Spawn. Five years later, director Mark A.Z. Dippé and screenwriter Alan B. McElroy brought Spawn to the screen in a PG-13 rated movie that didn’t go over well with a lot of fans. There were rumblings of a sequel for years after that, but nothing ever happened. Back around 2005, McFarlane announced he was going to make sure a new Spawn movie was going to be made, even if he had to produce, direct, and finance it himself. For nearly twenty years, he has been slowly pushing that project forward… but there is some level of hope that we might finally see the new Spawn sometime in 2025, so we figured we should put together a list of Everything We Know About the Spawn Reboot.


If you’re not familiar with the Spawn character, here’s some back story, thanks to Wikipedia: Al Simmons is a mercenary who died and went to hell for his crimes against humanity. Following a deal with Malebolgia, Simmons is given new life as a hellspawn and the chance to see his wife Wanda once again. The deal is revealed to be a trick, as Simmons is brought back to life five years after his death, unrecognizable to his wife and missing many of his memories. With little other choice, Simmons adopts his new hellish identity as Spawn in an effort to atone for his past sins and use his newfound powers for good.

While Dippé and McElroy put Spawn in the center of a superhero movie where he jumped around with his flowing cape and engaged in fight scenes, McFarlane wants the reboot to take a very different approach to the character. In fact, he was saying for years that Spawn not only wouldn’t have any dialogue in the new movie, but there wouldn’t even be any moments where the viewer would get a direct view of him in his costume. He intends for the character to be presented in a scary way, like an ethereal fog, the xenomorph in Alien, or the shark in Jaws. He’ll strike out of the darkness, take down the bad guys, and scare the hell out of the audience in the process.

McFarlane was also adamant that the film not re-tell the Spawn origin story, because he’s seen too many comic book adaptations that waste too much time on the origin.

In 2018, legendary effects artist Greg Nicotero signed on to create the look of Spawn for the new film, so chances are that we’re going to see more than quick flashes of him when the movie is finally made and released.


McFarlane envisions the new Spawn as a grounded supernatural horror story with an urban setting (the story takes place in New York City). He wants it to be a serious film that feature truly traumatizing moments. No joy, no fun lines. Just two hours of darkness and ugliness. Spawn is the only supernatural element in the story, and he has compared the idea to a mixture of the tone of horror movies like The Conjuring, Rosemary’s Baby, Jacob’s Ladder, and The Omen with the criminal worlds seen in films like L.A. Confidential and The Departed. As the he told Assignment X, the horror movies mentioned “only had one fantastic element in [them], and it was the supernatural or the ghost, and everything else in the world was normal. With superheroes, you have to have the hero, the super-villain, the fantastic headquarters, sometimes even the sidekick and you get more and more fantastic. This is just going to be The Departed and L.A. Confidential with a ghost moving around in it.”


Since the creator of Spawn has always said he wanted the new movie to be a low budget horror story, figuring it would cost somewhere in the range of 10 to 20 million, it seemed very fitting when Blumhouse Productions got involved in 2017. The company has found the property a tricky one to get just right, however, and have now spent several years developing it and working on the script. Blumhouse founder Jason Blum recently said he’s hoping to get the movie out into the world sometime in 2025 – and he also told Screen Rant, “I’m going to bring the Blumhouse edge. It’s going to be edgy and original as compared to other superhero movies. It’s gonna definitely feel like the Blumhouse version of a superhero movie.


McFarlane spent years working on the script, saying in 2010 that he was 80% through writing it and giving an update in 2016 to say that he had finally finished the first draft… he was just going to have to whittle it down in revisions, because it had ended up being a 183 page epic. He was aware that producers prefer scripts to be around 120 pages, so he was hoping to get it down to 140.

Once Blumhouse got involved, they started bringing in other writers to work on the script. Brian Tucker, who wrote the produced the Russell Crowe and Mark Wahlberg crime thriller Broken City, was the first to be hired to do revisions. Several years later, Blumhouse announced that they had hired three more writers for the project: Scott Silver (Joker), Malcolm Spellman (Captain America: New World Order), and Matthew Mixom (Yesterday Was Everything).

A while back, we heard the movie might focus on Detective Twitch after he loses his daughter to gang violence. He then begins his quest for revenge by enlisting the help of his ex-partner Danny to aid in his investigation of the criminal factions in New York. Twitch quickly realizes he’s in over his head as he learns that two of the largest organizations are teaming up to take over the criminal underworld of the city. That’s where Spawn comes in. Twitch is visited by Al, a mysterious man who has knowledge of his daughter’s death. It quickly becomes clear that Al is not who he appears to be as he reveals himself to be Spawn, a messenger from Hell who can aid Twitch in his search for justice. But that was several years ago, so the story could be completely different by this point.

Silver has also been working on the Joker sequel Joker: Folie a Deux, which McFarlane feels could be beneficial to Spawn. He believes that film will make studios more willing to take on R-rated movies based on comic books. Plus, it helps that Scott Silver is a writer on both of these projects. As McFarlane told us, “What does Scott [Silver] want to do next? And depending on whether we sold Spawn prior to that or we sell it the Monday after Joker 2 comes out, you know what we all want to do and Scott is attached to it and you guys are all wondering, right? It’s this thing called Spawn.


In 2013, Jamie Foxx said that he was relentlessly pursuing the title role in the new Spawn movie. In 2018, it was confirmed that he had signed on to star in the film, and that same year Jeremy Renner signed on to play homicide detective Maximilian “Twitch” Williams III. Since six years have gone by since they officially got involved, it wouldn’t be surprising to hear that they had walked away from the project – but McFarlane told us they’re still attached as of 2024.

About Foxx and Renner’s involvement, McFarlane said, “Until somebody says otherwise (they’re still attached). What ends up happening– again, Hollywood is in an interesting place that actors, writers, directors, producers, they all have schedules, and the windows of opportunities open and close and open and close, right? You’ve heard about it before. Plenty of people have projects and then other stuff comes along and something gets delayed and you just got to show your schedule. So until somebody tells me in my ear that these gentlemen are not involved for whatever reason, then I assume I haven’t heard otherwise. Nobody’s nobody’s talking to me about anybody being replaced.

It’s worth noting that Jamie Foxx and Jeremy Renner are united by something else besides their attachment to Spawn. Both men went through shocking health challenges in 2023. In January, Renner had a nearly deadly accident when he was crushed by a snowcat he was operating. Renner returned to work in December, with him begging to shoot Mayor of Kingstown season 3. Renner credited his family and friends with pulling him through the countless hours of physical therapy necessary to help him recover from more than thirty broken bones, and a collapsed lung. Meanwhile, Jamie Foxx’s situation was more mysterious. While shooting the Netflix film Back in Action (co-starring Cameron Diaz), Foxx suffered a “medical ailment” which was bad enough to sideline him for many months. Rumors got out of control pretty quickly, with many assuming Jamie Foxx had a heart attack or even had gone blind. Happily, the actor himself dispelled such rumors online several months ago, although he stated that, indeed, he had been to “hell and back.” All that said, it would be great to see Renner and Foxx, both of whom seem to be on the mend, team up for a cool movie based on McFarlane’s classic character.


McFarlane has said from the start that the reboot will be rated R. The rating goes along with the other non-negotiable terms he brought to the table: that he write, produce, and direct the film. Jason Blum has joined him as a producer and there have now been several other cooks in the kitchen of the writing department, but McFarlane remains committed to directing the film and making it R-rated. He told Shoryuken, “I have very few demands for the movie. It has to be Rated R, there’s no debate around that. With the story I want to tell, my intent goes back to that Spawn Cloud. I am less concerned about what happens in the movie as long as Spawn is cool and badass. The last demand is that I am the director. That’s it. Everything else is up for conversation.

Earlier this year, McFarlane said 2024 is a make or break year for the project, as far as he’s concerned. Either it’s going to start moving ahead in the Hollywood system with Blumhouse, or he’s going to walk away from the deal and get the movie made on his own. He told, “2024 is gonna be my make or break anyways, right? Either I’m gonna give Hollywood the best chance to do it and, if not, I’ve got plenty of outside investors waiting. So I’m trying to see if we can make the right deal within the norm of the Hollywood structure. If not, there have been plenty of examples, actually, a couple big ones last year, where people went outside the normal channels and succeeded. And people have done this before with independent movies: you make your movie and you just find a distributor. That one, I could do in a heartbeat. Fingers crossed, I’m gonna give as much of an effort to those that live within the confines of it. Obviously, Jason Blum is one of the better ones at getting things done. They tell me I get to read the script this month, so the email’s going out this week to remind them that they promised me that. Something’s gotta happen, something’s gonna happen, I just know myself. Something’s gonna happen because if I can’t figure it out inside, I’ll figure it out outside. I just know myself. But, hopefully, we can figure out a deal that keeps all the parties that have been involved over the years involved.” He has even said he’s willing to turn to Kickstarter to raise the budget if necessary.


In the 1997 movie, Spawn and Al Simmons were played by Michael Jai White. Although Jamie Foxx is on board to play the role this time around, White has been asked if it would get involved if he were asked. He told, “I really don’t think much about the sequel. If I was invited to do it, then I’d apply myself toward it, but I mean, I think it’s been talked about for a very long time. And it seems that Todd McFarlane has been leading that conversation. I think that to do a sequel is to do it as a hard R and make it very dark and badass. I think it needs to be like the cartoon or plain and simple: the comic book. Outside of that, I don’t think I’d be interested in doing it if it wasn’t going for the jugular. I wasn’t that impressed with the first one, even though I’m involved with it, but even then, I thought it should be like the comic book, or the series, you know, and I don’t know why such a dark character was going for PG-13. I think, just like I thought in the beginning, it should be real badass.

In addition to the ’97 movie, was a well regarded animated series that ran for three seasons – and McFarlane has previously said he’s hoping to get some new animated Spawn projects off the ground. Actually, he has talked about multiple animated series, a possible live-action series, and maybe even a Spawn Cinematic Universe… but they need to get this reboot made first.

And that’s everything we know about the Spawn reboot at this time. What do you think about this long-gestating project? Do you think Spawn will finally head into production this year? Let us know by leaving a comment below.


Source: Arrow in the Head

About the Author

Cody is a news editor and film critic, focused on the horror arm of, and writes scripts for videos that are released through the JoBlo Originals and JoBlo Horror Originals YouTube channels. In his spare time, he's a globe-trotting digital nomad, runs a personal blog called Life Between Frames, and writes novels and screenplays.