For a guy that nobody can see, The Invisible Man has been awfully busy. As with all the features that were originally planned to be part of Universal’s Dark Universe, The Invisible Man spent a long time in limbo following the lukewarm response to The Mummy in 2017, but now the project is ready to move forward as it has found its new star, The Haunting of Hill House‘s Oliver Jackson-Cohen.
The Invisible Man is set to go into production this month, so casting decisions were expected very soon, but Deadline reports the choice has been made. It seems that Oliver Jackson-Cohen’s performance on the aforementioned Netflix series impressed producers enough to give him the lead in the new film that will co-star Elizabeth Moss, Aldis Hodge, and Storm Reid.
It’s a pretty significant step up considering that previously Johnny Depp was on board to play the title role, back when The Invisible Man was set to be a part of the Dark Universe, a cinematic universe concept that would have been made up of all of Universal Pictures classic movie monsters. Depp eventually left the project. At one point it was being reported that Elizabeth Moss was going to take the main role, and while it was later confirmed that she is in the movie, she’s playing somebody else.
Several other films, like The Creature From the Black Lagoon and The Bride of Frankenstein were also planned, but at this point we’ve heard little about them recently, and they appear to be stalled.
Oliver Jackson-Cohen has played opposite some major big screen talents like Dwayne Johnson and Chris Evans, but this will be his biggest role to date. Even if The Invisible Man isn’t part of a larger cinematic universe, that doesn’t mean that franchise possibilities won’t exist. A successful Invisible Man movie at the box office could still mean sequels.
One major item that the current version has going for it is its producer. Jason Blum will be producing the film through Blumhouse productions, a small studio that has made its name with a collection of horror properties over the last few years including the recent successful reboot of Halloween, speaking of a franchise that is on its way to sequels.
If The Invisible Man is successful it will be interesting to see if that reinvigorates interest in the other classic monsters that are sitting on the shelf. It seems that Universal is having real trouble figuring out how to make these characters appeal to a modern audience, perhaps this movie will find the answer.