No one in the past 20 years has made quite the ripples in the deep end of the horror genre pool like Jordan Peele. The one-time skit writer and comic had a dark side — a really twisted and dark side — and he finally got to showcase his demented skills with a revolutionary film, Get Out.
Maybe you heard of it? It did okay in the box office and had a few people on Twitter talking. Well, probably whispering. The movie wasn’t that big of a deal. No worries.
Anywho… ever since then (and winning that innocuous Best Original Screenplay award at the Oscars), Peele’s star hasn’t just been on the rise. It’s been like a super nova. He came back with Us, which was preceded by an exclusive CBS All-Access deal with his recreation of The Twilight Zone.
And now we have this…Jordan Peele and his production company MonkeyPaw just signed a five-year deal with Universal.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the deal is create original content as well as produce original films from other aspiring artists and storytellers.
“Jordan has established himself as a premier voice and original storyteller with global appeal. He is leading a new generation of filmmakers that have found a way to tap into the cultural zeitgeist with groundbreaking content that resonates with audiences of all backgrounds,” said Universal Filmed Entertainment Group chairman Donna Langley, who made today’s announcement.
“We also share an important goal with Monkeypaw when it comes to increasing representation onscreen in the characters that are portrayed, the stories that are told and the people who tell them.”
That got this optimist thinking…
There is this vault somewhere the dusky gallows of Universal Pictures, possibly buried underneath the scrambled yolk of Howard the Duck, torn and shred toga of Evan Almighty, and whatever the hell was left from The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor. In that case covered in cobwebs beneath all that mess from forlorn movies from yesteryear is a “plan” for a franchise.
The idea involved reinventing the classics from the Silver Age of Hollywood. Big undertaking, glorious unveilings. Only one problem: Universal pegged it all on the five-foot-nothing-cuckoo-for-Cocoa-Puffs Tom Cruise.
And so went the way of the “Dark Universe.“
Anyone? Are there any hopeful fans left of what could have been to pick up what I’m throwing down. C’mon… anyone?!
The Future is Here
One of the darkest and deepest minds anywhere in Hollywood just signed a five-year deal of exclusivity with the same company that trashed a rich cinematic history on a flyer to make Ethan Hunt fail on this impossible mission.
Why can’t he become the scarlet knight to save the Dark Universe?
If they gave him the directions to that once-forgotten trunk in the recesses of the ancient movie lot, Peele could dust off the plans, give them a refresh, and get to work…starting by firing everyone associated with that abomination.
Peele knows full well Universal is buttering his entire loaf of bread. How could he not take that commitment out for a spin, clutching the chalky and (probably by this time) crumbly map in his hand marching to Donna Langley’s office, stares at the ‘Chairperson of Universal’ title on her business card, and talks some serious shop?
“It would not have been possible to make Get Out and Us without the endless trust and support we received from Donna Langley and the team at Universal. Their willingness to take risks and their commitment to original content makes them the perfect collaborative partner for Monkeypaw. I couldn’t be more excited for what lies ahead,” said Peele.
His mind fires on different cylinders. He knows it. His crew knows it. And certainly, Donna knows it too. Did you see Us?! He knows how to get your attention and keep it, and he doesn’t need to use eight- to nine-digit actors to do it.
Low-budget, high octane, fully original adaptations. That is what is awaiting Universal when they put the shiny ‘Jordan Peele’ name plate on the door and whatever title in his own business card.
The monsters are waiting, Donna. And for once, that bellowing growl you hear will not refer to your fans.