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‘Stranger Things’ star David Harbour rises from the pit as new Hellboy

After years of on-again, off-again updates regarding a third Hellboy movie, the franchise’s fate seemed to be sealed back in February when director-producer Guillermo del Toro indicated that it simply wasn’t going to happen. However, the saga appears to have found new life in the last few months, as a new Hellboy movie is indeed happening with a new director and star, according to the character’s creator.

Mike Mignola, who first introduced Hellboy to the world in a pair of 1993 comics, announced the upcoming reboot of the character’s big-screen franchise in a Facebook update posted Monday, May 8.

“There is going to be another Hellboy movie,” wrote Mignola. “It’s going to be an R-rated reboot directed by Neil Marshall (The Descent, Game of Thrones) and staring David Harbour (Stranger Things) as Hellboy.”

Promising “more news to come,” Mignola effectively ignited the hype for a Hellboy sequel once again, and left many fans pondering the possibilities of an R-rated adventure featuring the popular character. The two films in the original, live-action franchise were both rated PG-13.

Neither del Toro nor original franchise star Ron Perlman will apparently be returning for the reboot, with Stranger Things actor Harbour — who played Sheriff Jim Hopper in the acclaimed Netflix series — taking on the role of Hellboy this time around. Marshall, who helmed the hit horror film The Descent as well as some of the most acclaimed episodes of HBO’s Game of Thrones, will take over the director’s chair.

One of the most successful independent comic characters of all time, Mignola’s Hellboy series followed a young demon who, raised by a kind professor, grows up to become a powerful agent of an organization tasked with battling supernatural threats. His adventures have spawned a long list of spinoff series, as well as two live-action movies, several animated features, and multiple video games.

In a subsequent report, The Hollywood Reporter added that the upcoming film is currently being developed under the working title Hellboy: Rise of the Blood Queen with a script penned by Andrew Cosby (Eureka, Haunted), comic-book writer Christopher Golden (Buffy the Vampire SlayerHellboy), and Mignola. Marshall is reportedly working on a new script, and it’s uncertain how much of the existing script he’ll incorporate.

The first two films, released in 2004 and 2008, collectively earned $135.6 million worldwide and $260.2 million worldwide. Both films were received warmly by critics and general audiences, but the second film — which underperformed at the box office — was hampered by the release of Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight a week after Hellboy II: The Golden Army hit theaters. Both films were also released prior to the emergence of the international market as a major earnings-booster for U.S. films.

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