Neil Marshall’s ‘Hellboy’ Reboot R-Rated, Low on CGI

According to Mick Garris’s Post Mortem podcast, Neil Marshall’s Hellboy: Rise of the Blood Queen intends on differentiating itself from its predecessors (directed by Guillermo del Toro).


Neil Marshall said to Garris,

We’ve been granted permission to do it R-rated, which for me is just like taking the cuffs offIt’s like, okay, so now we can just make the movie we want to make. Nobody’s going to stop us…But, also, when you go back the original material, it is kind of bloody, so I’m going to embrace that.”

He also said that the movie would be made with as many practical effects and as little CGI as possible.

“I love to do stuff in camera whenever I possibly can, and use CG as the amazing tool that it is, to enhance or expand upon the world, but not to use it to replace reality, when you can do it [for] real.”

Paired with the announcement of David Harbour (“Stranger Things”) as Hellboy, it’s easy to see that Marshall is attempting to make a different movie from the popular cult classics Hellboy (2004) and Hellboy II: The Golden Army (2008)But is he succeeding?

david harbour, hellboy


One of the most intriguing things about Del Toro’s Hellboy is that like Marshall’s promise, the 2004 movie depended largely on practical effects. It’s well-known that Doug Jones (Abe Sapien) spent upwards of 5 hours in the makeup chair for the first movie alone. He played three separate characters in the second movie.

abe sapien, hellboy

Marshall’s comment, then, strikes somewhat the wrong tone. The main reason behind the final cancellation of Hellboy III, after all, was supposedly money. While practical effects are cooler and more interesting, they’re also far less cost-effective. Why is a brand new Hellboy reboot being made when Del Toro – a master of practical effects and creator of some of the most well-loved subculture movies to date – was denied the opportunity to finish his trilogy?

It’s too soon to decide whether Neil Marshall’s Hellboy will hold up to the high standards set by its predecessor. However, less than six months after the final nail in the coffin on Del Toro’s trilogy, it feels more like a cash-in. Deadpool and Logan have made R-rated movies profitable again. Movie studios are churning out reboot after reboot of Batman and Spiderman. It’s just a pity to see Hellboy join them.

Hellboy: Rise of the Blood Queen is coming in 2018.

How do you feel about the Hellboy reboot?

Elliott Dunstan
Elliott Dunstan
Elliott Dunstan is a semi-professional Canadian nerd with a special talent for reading way too fast, spouting weird trivia, and latching emotionally onto that minor character with a one-liner in the second episode. Elliott was born in 1995 and is mildly annoyed by this.