Del Toro and Frankenstein

frankenstein-jj-001 We already talked about The Scifi Wire’s questions to Guillermo Del Toro about the Hobbit (see it here), next the topic changed to Frankenstein.

Changing the subject, you say with your proposed Frankenstein movie you want to bring in elements from the novel that haven't been depicted yet.

Del Toro: Mmm-hmm, but that is two separate conversations. One is, I would love to do, like, a miniseries of the novel. But the [feature-film] project I have at Universal is not that. The project I have at Universal is trying to approach the mythology from a different point of view. So what you will see will be seeing the Frankenstein myth, but from a side, like an oblique way. If I told you exactly what it is, then it will be completely surpriseless by the time it is announced. But it won't be the straight Frankenstein, I don't think (Scifi Wire).

I love the idea of Del Toro making a miniseries out of the book, because there is so much in the novel that would be hard to condense into feature film.  This sounds like a Mary Reilly version of Frankenstein, and I am not sure that even Del Toro could pull that off and make it interesting.

Not through Victor Frankenstein's eyes, not through the monster's eyes, but somebody outside the bubble?

Del Toro: [laughs] It's not exactly Mary Reilly. It's not Igor's diary. No, but it's an ancillary story to ... Frankenstein, but it is period. ... (Scifi Wire)

Oh… ok, I am not sure how the Frankenstein myth could be told in this sort of oblique way unless it is told from the point of view of Igor or a villager.  I might have to read the book again to see if I can find clues to what he might be talking about.

So what is he planning to do?

It won't be the sympathetic-monster kind of thing?

Del Toro: Oh, you know, I think that we're going to go both ways. One of the things I love about Frankenstein is that the incarnations can vary so greatly. The greatest soulless monster of Frankenstein has always been Christopher Lee, because when he stares at you, there's really nobody home. It's literally one of the scariest moments I remember as a kid. I thought, "Oh, my God, this thing is not human." And the opposite, the complete polar opposite, is Boris Karloff, who is more human than humans. So you will have both those vibes in the piece (Scifi Wire).

So it will be a Christopher Lee meets Boris Karloff in a Frankenstein movie told in an oblique way… that isn’t hard to wrap your head around this idea unless you are not Del Toro himself.  I am not sure I see what he is planning to do.