It’s almost hard to remember that Universal was once hard at work on a cinematic universe centered on their iconic monster franchises, aptly dubbed the Dark Universe. Only one of those films ever saw the light of day in the form of 2017’s critically maligned and unsuccessful The Mummywhich starred Tom Cruise. Its poor performance led to the cancellation of several films in the works, and now director alex kurtzman (transformers, star trek) and screenwriter Jenny Lumet (Rachel Getting Married) have opted to look back on the film and what they’ve gleaned from it.
The two recently appeared on The Playlist’s Bingeworthy Podcast, where they were asked their thoughts on the film five years later by host rodrigo perez. Lumet had the following to say about the film’s response to him as a first-time screenwriter on a project of this scale:
“I found it so valuable – I had never written a very, very big movie, and I think it’s important to know how to do all the things. So I learned how to do a thing. And I am forever grateful for that experience. It was movie making on an enormous scale.
Kurtzman, whose directorial debut was The Mummygave his thoughts on the matter as well:
“I tend to subscribe to the point of view that you learn nothing from your successes, and you learn everything from your failures. And that was probably the biggest failure of my life, both personally and professionally. There’s about a million things I regret about it, but it also gave me so many gifts that are inexplicably beautiful. I didn’t become a director until I made that movie, and it wasn’t because it was well-directed – it was because it wasn’t.”
It’s also no secret that there are a lot of hands involved in projects that are apart of a larger universe, and Perez hinted at the “several cooks in the kitchen” with the Dark Universe films. Kurtzman had the following to say with regards to the countless voices in the film’s production:
“And as brutal as it was, in many ways, and as many cooks in the kitchen as there were, I am very grateful for the opportunity to make those mistakes because it rebuilt me into a tougher person, and it also rebuilt me into a clearer filmmaker.And that has been a real gift, and I feel those gifts all the time because I’m very clear now when I have a feeling that doesn’t feel right – I am not quiet about it anymore. proceed when I feel that feeling. It’s not worth it to me. And you can’t get to that place of gratitude until you’ve had that kind of experience.”
Kurtzman’s words are quite refreshing to hear, as are Lumet’s. Both have clearly learned a great deal from the shortcomings of such a major film, and those experiences will clearly have a strong effect on their new projects, such as their new Showtime series. The Man Who Fell to Earth. It’s also particularly gratifying to hear from Kurtzman, who has been a voice in several major Hollywood franchises, such as star trek and transformers. Hollywood is undoubtedly a land of egos, but these two are not above calling out their own mistakes and how those have impacted them for the better.
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