Ever since Todd McFarlane announced that we would be getting an all-new Spawn adventure on the big screen, speculation has been high as to what the movie will look like. Previously, Spawn was brought to life by New Line Cinema, and without pulling any punches, it sucked ass. This was not the Spawn movie that the die-hard comic book fans had expected. Hell, it wasn’t even the Spawn movie non-fans were expecting.
It’s been 21 years since McFarlane’s massive selling anti-hero first appeared in cinemas, so to say there’s a lot riding on this adaptation is an understatement. One more bad movie could be the final nail in Spawn’s gnarly looking coffin. To help prevent that from happening, here’s our list of the 10 things we want to see in a new Spawn movie.
10. Michael Jai White
Without a doubt, Michael Jai White was the best thing about the 1997 Spawn movie. When talk of a reboot started to do the rounds, there was a very strong rumor that White would reprise his dual role of Al Simmons and the monster he becomes. But let’s be honest. White is 51 years old, and – despite looking like he could kill you with a look – his is probably not the top name on McFarlane’s list of actors he wants as his lead character. But that doesn’t mean there’s not room for a Michael Jai White cameo.
9. An R Rating
Deadpool has been heralded as the movie that proved to the world that superheroes do not have to be kid-friendly to make millions at the box office. Since then, Wolverine has been reinvented as a foul-mouthed killer, and characters like The Punisher are enjoying new success on TV, all because they don’t have to kiss babies and help your grandmother cross the street. The public acceptance of an R rated anti-hero is exactly what a new Spawn movie needs. It means we all get a version of the character we deserve, while the filmmakers don’t have to rely on tiny independent budgets because larger studios finally want to make their movies.
8. An Al Simmons For The Ages
Whoever is cast in the role of Albert “Al” Francis Simmons, it is important that it is someone who can realistically reprise the role again and again, ala Robert Downey Jr, as Iron Man, or Samuel L. Jackson as Nicky Fury. This is because the Spawn universe is too big for a single movie, and it would be a real shame if after all these years we end up with multiple actors tackling the role when we could just have one who does it really well. So who would we like to see in the role? How about Aldis Hodge? Or perhaps Idris Elba? Todd McFarlane has guaranteed us a name, we just hope the filmmakers chose someone who is right for the role, rather than someone who simply has name value. Is Richard Ayoade free at the minute?
7. An Ashley Wood Aesthetic
Spawn needs to be a dark movie, both thematically and visually. But there’s a difference between making a movie quite literally dark, and giving it an atmosphere that’s unsettling and even scary at times. If that’s the look they’re going for then they simply need to translate the artwork of Ashley Wood (artist on the Hellspawn series) onto the big screen. It’s that simple.
6. The Billy Kincaid Saga
The Billy Kincaid saga is one of the most important stories in the Spawn series and will work perfectly with an R rating. In the comics, Kincaid is a child killer who has recently been released from a mental institute. Kincaid – who had Simmons had been hired to kill in his former life – would quickly go back to his murdering ways, luring children to their deaths in his ice cream truck. Without giving too much away, Simmons as Spawn makes Kincaid his first victim after returning to Earth, exacting a brutal and unforgettable form of justice upon him. Let’s just say you’ll never be able to listen to “I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream” again in the same way!
5. Sam and Twitch
The extreme murder of Billy Kincaid attracts the attention of the local law enforcement, in particular, Detectives Sam Burke and Twitch Williams of New York’s finest Homicide Division.
Sam and Twitch are your typical brains and brawn combination and are always one step behind Spawn as he exacts his own brand of justice across Rat City. They would become so popular as characters that they even ended up with their own comic book, and only last year Kevin Smith was in talks to turn them into their own HBO TV series. The popularity of these two cops would be sure to translate to the new movie if handled correctly and would even work as the centerpieces to the whole thing, allowing SPawn the chance to be the brooding, dark figure in the periphery. Casting Simon Pegg and Nick Frost wouldn’t hurt either.
4. Sam Elliott as Cogliostro
Cogliostro is one of the key characters in the early days of Simmons coming to terms with being a Hellspawn. Cog, as he is known, is actually a Hellspawn himself who has refused to use his powers to build up as much energy as he can to allow him to escape his fate. Cog takes Simmons under his wing, and mentors him in the ways of the Hellspawn, teaching him how to use the powers he has for good, and to one day usurp the Beast that sits upon the fiery throne of Hell.
In the 1997 movie, Cogliostro was played by the late Nicol Williamson, but in the new movie, we think he should be played by none other than Sam Elliott. Elliott simply has ‘the look’ the role is crying out for, and he’d be one hell of a spokesman for Simmons if he does end up mute when he becomes Spawn. Plus that mustache! Need we say anymore?
Whether we’ll get to see Cog on-screen again though depends on whether the creators of the character – McFarlane and Neil Gaiman – are on speaking terms.
3. A Real Rogues Gallery
John Leguizamo was a pretty big deal at one time, so casting him as Clown in the original movie was a pretty big deal. And to be fair to him, Leguizamo made a halfway decent villain, it’s just a shame he played it more for laughs than for scares. When (not if) Clown appears in the new Spawn movie, he needs to be much more vicious – after all, he is the alter-ego of The Violator, one of Hell’s nastiest demons. The Violator’s most famous disguise needs to be much more like Pennywise and a little less like Krusty the Clown.
The Violator/Clown is easily the most heavily utilized villain in the Spawn series of comics, but the writers have a real rogues gallery on their hands to chose from if they so wish. How about Violator’s brothers – Vindicator, Vandalizer, Vaporizer, and Vacillator? Or the murderous and maniacal Freak? There are tons of great villains to bring back to life, and with McFarlane behind the camera, we’re sure we’ll get to see a few.
2. Let’s Play Alien
Is there a cooler image in any comic than the one in which Spawn uses his power to allow himself to burst out of a villains chest, a la the classic scene in Alien? If any comic panel deserves to make it into the movie, it’s that moment.
1. A Trilogy And/Or Expanded Universe
Remember Dredd? Remeber how freakin’ great that movie was? Remember how disappointed you were when its underwhelming box office performance meant that the proposed trilogy – which included the Dark Judges, ffs – never got made? The same cannot happen to Spawn. Spawn 2.0 must succeed and it must lead to a bunch of sequels (ideally a trilogy), and an expanded universe. The world created in the Spawn comic books is so deep that there are a ton of characters that could find themselves in their own spin offs, and so many different adventures for the Al Simmons’ alter-ego to have that it simply cannot and will not fit into a single, solitary movie. That is why you must go and see it at the cinema. The future of the franchise depends on it.
What do you want to see in a new Spawn movie? Do you agree with our choices? Sound off in the comments section below, and don’t forget to share with your like-minded friends.
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