With the first glimpse of Universal's upcoming "Mummy" reboot, fans got to see Sofia Boutella's take on the classic monster. The film, which stars Tom Cruise, is setting up a new shared monster universe for Universal Studios. As the first entry in a potentially major franchise, director Alex Kurzman definitely wanted to make sure that all the details were right for the new "Mummy." And as Kurtzman revealed to CinemaBlend, the post-credits scene of "X-Men: Days of Future Past" actually made him rethink a lot of what he was going to do for "The Mummy."
The 2014 "X-Men" film features a post-credits scene set in Ancient Egypt, and it gives viewers their first look at the blue-skinned boy who would grow up to be Apocalypse. It turns out, that very design was basically exactly what Kurtzman initially had in mind for his mummy.
"I'll let you in on a secret. There was a moment when I had sort of rendered a design that I liked for a male version of The Mummy," said Kurtzman. "And in that version of The Mummy, the Mummy had been born with a skin pigmentation that at the time would have made him really sort of an outcast. And I thought it was an interesting backstory, because it began to tell the story of someone who had been bullied, which I found topical. I was reaching for a way to make the Mummy a character who is relatable, understandable, and that spoke to issues that we're dealing with now."
Kurtzman then says that when he saw the end of "Days of Future Past" and the kid Apocalypse, the designs were too similar to be ignored.
"[T]hen I saw the end of 'Days of Future Past.' And they had the character that Oscar Isaac wound up playing as a boy, and it was, I kid you not, the exact same design," said Kurtzman. "And I was like, 'Oh, man! That is not good!' And actually it was the catalyst, it was the moment of, 'Okay, not only is this not going to be different enough, Bryan Singer just did it, I definitely don't want to go down that road.' I had had that voice in my head for some time to make it a woman, and that was the moment where, the minute I saw that post-credits scene, I went, 'We have to start over.' I don't want to mess around even remotely with anything that feels familiar or feels like it's been done. I have to go in totally new territory."
Overall, Kurtzman says "Days of Future Past" was "very helpful to me, because it made me take that leap. And once we took that leap, the story presented itself in such a beautiful way, such a different way...[T]he minute I allowed myself to let the Mummy be Ahmanet, it just felt right. And that's the best way for me to say it."
Directed by Alex Kurtzman from a script by from a script by John Spaihts, the action-adventure horror film also stars Sofia Boutella of “Kingsman: The Secret Service,” “Star Trek Beyond”), Jake Johnson (“Jurassic World”), Annabelle Wallis, Courtney B. Vance (“American Crime Story: The People vs. OJ Simpson”) and Russell Crowe (“Gladiator,” “Man of Steel”) as Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde.
Kurtzman and Chris Morgan are overseeing the development of an interconnected movie universe, a la Marvel Studios, that will reimagine Universal’s classic monsters. Additional films are already in development featuring the Invisible Man, the Wolf Man, Van Helsing, the Creature from the Black Lagoon and the Bride of Frankenstein.
“The Mummy” opens June 9, 2017.