Universal Studio’s Dark Universe has suffered another major setback. Men in Black writer Ed Solomon has revealed he’s no longer writing Invisible Man, the monster flick set to star Johnny Depp. It’s unclear whether he was fired or quit, but what is clear is that Universal has a long way to go to fix the mess it’s gotten itself into.
In 2016, it was announced that Solomon would be writing an Invisible Man movie with Depp as the lead, part of Universal’s rebooted monster movie series of films, later dubbed the Dark Universe. However, Solomon told Digital Spy he’s no longer involved with the project, citing the oft-used creative differences.
“At the end of the day, I think Universal and I had a different idea of what the movie was gonna be,” he told them. “We began thinking that our notions would meld, and I should’ve listened more closely to what they really were wanting.”
This is just one in a series of blows against the Dark Universe. After Tom Cruise’s The Mummy reboot failed to meet box office expectations, director Alex Kurtzman—along with Fast & Furious producer Chris Morgan—reportedly left the project. They were set to orchestrate the franchise’s overall vision, which would include crossovers, cameos, and team-ups, akin to the Marvel or DC cinematic franchises.
In the wake of this loss, Solomon said Universal is struggling to figure out what it wants to do with this franchise—something that has left a lot of upcoming films in jeopardy. “I think Universal has had to come to a kind of reckoning of, ‘What are we doing with the Dark Universe?’ and, ‘What is our real intention with it?’, and I think they’re reconfiguring it now, which I think is probably good.”
As of now, it’s unclear whether Invisible Man, along with other announced films like The Wolfman and The Creature From The Black Lagoon, are even still happening. The only one still-kinda-sorta on the table is period piece Bride of Frankenstein, the second film in the Dark Universe series, even though it’s undergone a series of delays itself. It might still happen, but its connection to the Dark Universe might be severed. Last we heard, director Bill Condon insists it has “nothing to do with anything,” which presumably means the franchise as a whole.