Horror impresario Clive Barker has just revealed plans for a remake of The Mummy that would involve a transgender lead.
In a chat with fellow horror director Mick Garris for Garris’ podcast Post Mortem with Mick Garris, Barker and his friend reminisced about their proposed remake of the Universal classic. The pair had collaborated on a script and even pitched the concept to Universal, with Barker–then a hot director thanks to the success of Hellraiser–set to helm the film.
“It had the first gender change.. transsexual… so we were ahead of the curve,” Barker recalls. “So there’s a boy born… a boy-child born at the beginning of the narrative, who is obviously significant in the narrative… but we cut twenty years and there’s no sign of this guy. Apparently. There is a wonderfully strange, mysterious woman who is part of the narrative, a very important part of the narrative – I don’t want to say too much because we’re gonna make this one day… I hope… we should talk to Netflix…”
“The little boy… who is born at the beginning of the narrative… has become this exquisite woman,” he continues. “And a major part of a modern-day narrative about The Mummy. But this is our naivete, Mick. How could we ever have thought, in 1989, when we turned this in, that they would say, ‘Ah, great!’ I think I’ve had a slightly naïve attitude [towards] the suits.”
Barker and Garris also reveal that the story would have been very sexual in nature and set in a Beverly Hills museum.
Here’s hoping executives at Universal Pictures hear the podcast. The studio went on to successfully reboot The Mummy in 1999, and produce several sequels. A more recent remake in 2017 starring Tom Cruise was meant to launch the studio’s “Dark Universe;” an extended universe that would entail all the classic horror monsters. The film proved an enormous bomb, and the studio canceled subsequent entries Bride of Frankenstein and The Invisible Man as a result.