After the mild success of Snow White & The Huntsman, Rupert Sanders proved himself to Universal as being a credible director with enough skill for them to want to work with him again. I thought Snow White & The Huntsman was pretty good, and while it seems less and less likely that Sanders will return to direct the sequel, I would be very interested in seeing his style used to reboot Van Helsing. The last Van Helsing movie, directed by Stephen Sommers, and was a bit rubbish really, so the reboot is very much needed.
Sanders and Universal have engaged in casual discussions, reports Twitch, with both sides expressing an interest in the film, and with Universal wanting to keep Sanders, this would appear to be the best way forward. With the issues with Sanders and Kristen Stewart while filming Snow White still fresh in everyone’s minds, I would expect Universal could be worried of a backlash should Sanders direct the sequel, so keeping him but having him direct a new film altogether seems the best option.
The Van Helsing reboot will star and be produced by Tom Cruise, and with his new film Jack Reacher wrapping up, it is thought that Van Helsing will be his next film. If that is the case, Universal need to secure a director sharpish, and these “casual” discussions just might lead to Sanders being the director they need. Star Trek’s Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman are also producing, and here is what Kurtzman said about the reboot back in June:
“Well, I don’t want to give away too much, because we are actually at the very beginning of talking about what to do with it. But I do feel like the Van Helsing that Anthony Hopkins plays in ‘[Bram Stoker’s] Dracula’ is sort of the parody version of it, and the Van Helsing that Hugh Jackman played was obviously in a different place as well. I think that these kinds of movies have evolved a lot since then. You know, ‘The Dark Knight’ was a major, major corner-turning moment in the way that genre and superhero stories could be told. Really grounded in reality. Really grounded in really cool things,” he said. “That’s what I’d like to do without sacrificing the fantasy element. We aspired to do that as well on ‘Trek,’ you know, keep it ‘real.’ That’s such a different franchise than Batman, but that’s really what we wanted to do. And we’d love to do that with Van Helsing.”