By the Sea, starring real-life spouses Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt, was instantly buzzing due to the talent involved, but as we get closer to the film’s release, it looks like it has little else going for it. Critical response hasn’t been motivating its box-office projections and it’s foreseen that Universal will take a hit, but it could all be worth it if Jolie agrees to make either The Bride of Frankenstein or that long-talked-about Wanted 2.
THR published an analysis of the film’s potential box-office earnings, and buried towards the end is a note about Universal’s plans for its upcoming cinematic universe of monsters. Producers Alex Kurtzman and Chris Morgan are spearheading these films, which begin with the revamped Mummy movie. According to the trade, a Bride of Frankenstein is also on the docket as a tentpole and the studio wants Jolie to headline it.
However, it doesn’t seem as though she’s too eager to sign on. That’s why — at least, according to the report — the studio is backing Jolie’s By the Sea, which she directed, in the hopes the action might sway her towards their monsters. Another potential win for the studio, even if it loses millions on By the Sea, is another Wanted movie. A sequel to the 2008 action film from director Timur Bekmambetov has been in the works for some time, and producers Marc Platt and John DeLuca said last year that a script had been written and it’s “getting pretty good.” The director confirmed the progress that’s been made to Collider and said that it’s now up to the studio.
While it’s unclear which Universal would like more for Jolie, the studio has made their monster films a priority. They will be rolled out on a schedule of one per year and we’ll supposedly see solo iterations for Dracula, The Wolfman, and Van Helsing, the latter of which recently added Jon Spaihts (Doctor Strange) and Eric Heisserer (The Thing remake) to the writing team.