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HELLBOY: THE CROOKED MAN Promises R-Rated Horror Reboot

It’s time for Hellboy to make yet another cinematic comeback. Although the last Hellboy reboot didn’t go as well as hoped, it’s never too late for the next one to make a big splash. This go around, we’re going to see our favorite red demon appear in Hellboy: The Crooked Man. And this adaptation promises to be a unique cinematic take on the story, one that stays loyal to its comic origins.

Dark Horse Comics

Millenium Media will shepherd the production. And Brian Taylor will direct. But most importantly, Mike Mignola, who created the Hellboy comics, will write the script alongside his collaborator Chris Golden. According to Deadline, Hellboy: The Crooked Man will “expand Hellboy’s world through one of the most beloved issues of the comic series.” In addition, the movie has found its Hellboy. Deadpool 2‘s Jack Kesy will play this younger version of the character, per The Hollywood Reporter. In other casting news, Yellowstone‘s Jefferson White will star as Tom Ferrell and Resident Evil‘s Adeline Rudolph will act as Bobbie Jo Song. Hellboy: The Crooked Man has also officially wrapped principal photography, and Mignola assures us this adaptation does his work justice.

The Hollywood Reporter noted further details of the plot, sharing: “The new film will see Hellboy and a rookie BPRD agent stranded in 1950s rural Appalachia. There, they discover a small community haunted by witches, led by a local devil with a troubling connection to Hellboy’s past: the Crooked Man.”

For those not in the know, the Crooked Man is bad news. In the Hellboy comics, the Crooked Man was named Jeremiah Witkins. Witkins was an evil man who profited from war and the troubles of others, which he sought to create for his own benefit. Eventually, he was hung for his dark deeds. But he returned to the land of the living as a demonic soul collector.

Dark Horse Comics

Millennium Media’s President Jeffrey Greenstein shared, “The Crooked Man is a departure from all previous Hellboy films where Mike Mignola and the creator of the comics will finally shepherd an authentic version of his stories and characters in film form. This is the first in the series of films that will captivate audiences in familiar (and new) ways. Brian Taylor is an expert across the board, and I couldn’t think of a better person to bring this story to life to show our audience this different and original Hellboy slate of films.”

Dark Horse Comics

Speaking with Collider, Taylor himself added more about the Hellboy reboot, promising to lean into the horror of it all. He offered:

So, first of all, I love the character of Hellboy, and my favorite run of the character is this particular era. The Guillermo del Toro movies were massive-scale space operas and just pure del Toro through and through.

But some of the comics Mike (Mignola) was doing at the time had a very different feeling. More lean and mean creepy folk horror. A younger Hellboy, wandering the dark corners of the world… Paranormal investigator, night stalker… The Crooked Man, in particular, is just such an iconic book—written by Mike, drawn by Richard Corben, another legend. Set in the late ’50s. For me, it’s my favorite version of the character. So the appeal of this one, to me, is to go back to that and do a real reset and really give us that version of Hellboy, which I just don’t think we’ve seen yet.

Additionally, Taylor teased the movie won’t shy from gore. He says, “I pitched an R-rated folk horror movie, and the team here at Millennium have been nothing but supportive. It’s a great group of people, and they love horror.” He added that his movie will have three leads. Alongside Hellboy, the movie will star Tom Ferrell and a mystery character created for the movie.

It certainly sounds like we’ll see something different coming our way with this Hellboy reboot… Something straight from hell.

Originally published on February 21, 2023.

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