Image courtesy of Image Comics

For years now, Todd McFarlane has been trying to bring a new Spawn movie to life. Unlike many other comic book films in recent memory, McFarlane’s pitch has been to turn his Image Comics creation into a lower-budget horror film with superhero elements. Yet, the project has languished in development hell even with Blumhouse Productions on board since 2017 as a creative partner. After all these years, McFarlane now says 2024 is the make-or-break year for the film, one way or another.

The Image Comics co-founder recently spoke with and, naturally, the subject of the Spawn reboot came up. McFarlane explained that he is now in the process of trying to get the film made through more traditional Hollywood channels. Failing that, he intends to go outside the studio system to get the feature produced independently, with the hopes of securing distribution after the fact.

“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.”


It is a little difficult to imagine that this project – which could easily turn into a franchise – has taken so long to get off the ground. We know that McFarlane wants a great deal of creative control (he at one point wanted to direct), which could have been part of the issue. He clearly wants to avoid another disaster as the 1997 adaptation did not go well. McFarlane originally wrote a script for the new adaptation himself, and he sees it as an R-rated affair. However, a trio of new A-list writers boarded the film last year in the hopes of giving it new life. On that subject, McFarlane is expecting to see a completed script very soon.

“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.”

Blum is, indeed, a man who gets things done. He similarly ushered Five Nights at Freddy’s through a very long development process. It made nearly $300 million at the box office last year despite being available to stream on Peacock. Optimism in place, Blum will also find a way to get this one over the finish line. McFarlane appears determined to make it happen, even if he has to get creative to do so.

The Spawn movie remains without a release date but, if all goes well, we’ll learn more this year. Stay tuned.

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