Hellboy has always been a little… weird. While the character could be described as a superhero (albeit in a rather loose sense of the word), his stories have always dealt more with folklore, mythology, and questions of destiny than with superheroics in the vein of what one might expect from Marvel or DC. This is something that was reflected in Guillermo del Toro’s cinematic interpretation of the character, which dealt more with Hellboy and his friends’ status as freaks and outsiders that typical superhero movie fare.
This trend is likely to continue in director Neil Marshall’s upcoming reboot, which has been described as closer in tone and style to ‘Hellboy’ creator Mike Mignola’s original comics. Indeed, Mignola himself seems to think as much. In an interview with io9 that touches on everything from the film to the past and future of the ‘Hellboy’ comics, Mignola briefly shared his thoughts on what will set the rebooted ‘Hellboy’ films apart from Marvel’s decade-long string of mega-hits.
“Well, I mean, if anything we’re trying to do something very different. Basically, there’s no part of ‘Hellboy’ that was ever going to be like other superhero movies. And the more Marvel stuff there is, the more DC stuff there is, ‘Hellboy’ never really feels like – even in the del Toro things – a superhero movie. It’s so much “big teams of guys, in costumes, running around and saving the world from big cosmic menace stuff…” I believe the new movie will feel even less like a regular superhero thing. The idea with this one was to make it play much less like a superhero film, to downplay the superhero elements even more than del Toro did. This one is much more folklore/mythology/horror, and not “big team rushing in to do battle with whatever kind of stuff.”
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Directed by Neil Marshall, ‘Hellboy’ stars David Harbour, Ian McShane, Milla Jovovich, Daniel Dae Kim, and Sophie Okonedo. The film is due for release on January 11, 2019.