What Universal's New Monster Movie Universe Could Learn From Sitcoms

Illustration for article titled What Universal's New Monster Movie Universe Could Learn From Sitcoms

On the surface, dark feature-length tales of classic monsters and televised, laugh-tracked 30 minute (or 20 if we're counting commercials) sitcoms may seem pretty far apart, but there might be some lessons for the movies to draw.


In response to the news that Universal might be hiring a stable of writers for its collective new "universe" of monster movies, as opposed to hiring different ones for individual movies, an interesting comparison was drawn between how Universal was structuring their team and how modern sitcoms did:


This is how sitcoms are done. It's novel to try it in films, but it could work.

Craig Michael Ranapia

Actually, it isn't novel in Hollywood at all. Studios (including Universal) used to have stables of writers — and other creatives — under contract working on assigned projects and doing re-writes rather than having them farmed out for draft after draft and a parade of big-ticket script doctors.

Other commenters chimed in with some sitcom / monster movie crossovers that the comparison suggested:

Anton Gully

Dude, if this doesn't end up with the Monster, the Mummy and the Wolfman sharing an apartment with crotchety Mr Dracula as their landlord then I will be disappointed.

Andrew P Mayer

"Dr. Acula" lives upstairs and has a strict no monsters policy for his apartments. The rest of them live below and have to pretend to be human.

Oh, crap, the BBC already made that show.

Have you own idea for a sitcom monster mash-up or thoughts on how the new writer's room process will unfold? Tell us in the comments.


Let me explain how this is all going to go horribly horribly wrong.

The best movies are always written by one person, or sometimes a talented partnership like the Cohen Brothers. All the crappy exploitation movies out there are written by a "team" of professional writers. As such, you get no cohesiveness, poor plots, and a lot of gags. That's because what you end up with is a committee of gag writers with no direction.