Jordan Peele has successfully established himself as one of the most prominent voices in blockbuster horror today. After the success of Get Out and Us, Peele can pretty much guarantee an audience for his films in the horror genre. And now a rumor is doing the rounds that his next film under Universal Studios is looking to cast Will Smith in the lead role. And it is tied to their Universal Monsters franchise.
Last year, Universal signed Peele on for a five year, first-look deal. The studio will also produce Peele's next two movies, and it is for Jordan Peele's Untitle Universal Monsters movie that the filmmaker is rumored to be keen on casting Will Smith. In the past, Peele has voiced his desire to use his films to promote black actors, and while Smith, being one of the biggest stars in the world, is hardly in need of promoting, his collaboration with Peele under Universal can help give a boost to both their careers.
Despite owning the rights to some of the most influential monsters in the horror genre, Universal has had a bit of a mixed bag in terms of success so far. Their desire to set up their own cinematic universe comprising of Dracula, The Mummy, The Werewolf and other famous characters crumbled in the face of a negative reception to the individual movies, whether it was The Mummy with Tom Cruise or Dracula Untold with Luke Evans.
This made the studio hit reboot on their plans. Their next offering was the low budget thriller The Invisible Man, which proved to be much more profitable. It is now being said that Universal intends to continue producing low budget horror films under the direction of auteur filmmakers, which is where Jordan Peele comes in. The actor-comedian turned director has proven that he can make provocative, hard-hitting horror that gets talks about for years without needing a giant budget to do so.
As for Smith, he has not dipped his toes in the world of pure horror films so far, but his turn in I Am Legend, the post-apocalyptic action drama with tinges of horror, has proved he can be a good fit for that kind of roles. Will Smith may not be as much a mainstay of summer blockbusters these days as he once was, but his recent outings in Aladdin and Bad Boys for Life have proved that audiences worldwide still very much enjoy watching him onscreen.
Apart from Peele, Universal is also reportedly looking to have John Krasinski, of A Quiet Place fame, make a horror film for them as well. Time will tell whether all these former Dark Universe projects under Universal will finally allow the studio to properly kickstart their own cinematic universe. For now, Krasinski is busy with preparations for the release of his latest offering, the sequel to A Quiet Place, whose release got postponed due to the global lockdown. As far as Peele is concerned, he is gearing up for the release of Candyman, the reboot of the 1992 horror classic that he helped produce. This rumor comes from Full Circle Cinema.