The Toxic Avenger remake has been in development for an age now, and some exciting filmmakers have been attached along the way, but today brings news of by far the most left-field bit of news yet. Per Variety, Macon Blair, perhaps best known as the star of Jeremy Saulnier‘s brutal films Blue Ruin and Green Room, will write and direct Legendary’s reboot of the beloved cult classic.
The original film was directed by Michael Herz and Lloyd Kaufman, and told of the nerdy, soft-spoken Melvin Junko, who gets pushed into a vat of toxic waste by a pack of vicious bullies and mutates into a deformed superhuman who uses his incredible strength to battle bullying. The film famously boasted a gross-out sense of humor with over-the-top gore, nudity, and general goofiness.
Blair makes for an unexpected but exciting choice to write and direct the film. The long-time actor turned toward filmmaking with his feature debut I Don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore, a sardonic dramedy starring Elijah Wood and Melanie Lynskey that premiered at Sundance and took home the Grand Jury Prize. The characters in that film embodied some singular oddity and strangeness (and the movie generally owned), which promises Blair might just be the right kind of filmmaker to take on an idiosyncratic piece of bizarre filmmaking like The Toxic Avenger.
Previous filmmakers attached to the project included Hot Tub Time Machine helmer Steve Pink way back in 2010 and more recently, Sausage Party co-director Conrad Vernon, who circled The Toxic Avenger in 2016. However, fans who’ve been waiting for the better part of the decade might just finally get to see the damn thing made. Legendary picked up the feature film rights last December and set the project as a priority for the studio. Original filmmakers Kaufman and Herz will produce via Troma Entertainment with Alex Garcia and Jay Ashenfelter overseeing for Legendary.