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UPDATED: David Harbour compares Hellboy to Indiana Jones. Ben Daimio has also been cast

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David Harbour (Stranger Things) is playing Hellboy, in the new film which is slated to begin production in September. Neil Marshall (The Descent, Game of Thrones) will direct.

The film’s working title is Hellboy: Rise of the Blood Queen and has a script by Andrew Cosby (Eureka), Christopher Golden, and Mike Mignola (the creator of Hellboy). Ian McShane (John Wick, American Gods) is playing Hellboy’s adoptive father, Professor Trevor Bruttenholm (pronounced Broom). Milla Jovovich will be playing the Blood Queen and Sasha Lane (American Honey) has been cast as Alice Monaghan.

Harbour has been talking about the film to MTV’s Happy Sad Confused podcast and described how his Hellboy will differ from Ron Perlman’s version.

There are things I’m going to do that are different than that. Hellboy is the same character from the comics, and from what Ron Perlman did. There are certain things that are the same thing. There’s a different approach. Ron sort of embraces this machismo in himself and in Hellboy, that kind of is this thing, and I really like it and I think it’s super fun and it’s a super fun performance, but I think Hellboy has a certain psycho dynamic where occasionally he has to prove that he’s the lion and has to roar, but I think he struggles with his own masculinity. But I don’t think he needs that as much as maybe those other movies did. I have a bit of a different take on his capability or his slickness. I sort of think that for me he’s a little less skilled at constructing that persona.

There is some (explanation of Hellboy), but it’s not really an origin story movie. We kind of pick up the movie like we’re running and gunning. We do have a little bit of stuff where we show stuff, but it really is a story and you just drop in with this guy. So in a way, I feel like that’s kind of what Indiana Jones was. You start with him stealing the idol, but also you do go back to the university and you understand he’s an archaeologist, you understand these things, but this is just a guy who goes and steals idols and fights Nazis and wants to steal the Ark of the Covenant. But you never go back when he’s a kid and you’re like, ‘How did he become Indiana Jones?’ It’s like no, we accept that this is Indiana Jones and I think that’s kind of what our story does too. You accept that there’s this half-demon guy running around the world and being a paranormal investigator and solving crimes and also dealing with his own issues at the same time.

I quite like the sound of that and it does seem that Harbour is putting a tremendous amount of thought into his performance.

We recently learnt that some members of the B.P.R.D. will also be in the film and they included Major Ben Daimio: rugged military type with cold, calculating eyes, close-cropped hair and three jagged scars raked across his grizzled face.

He is a great character in the comics and it turns out that Ed Skrein (Deadpool) has been cast to play him. However, there have already been cries of “whitewashing” as the character in the comics is a Japanese American soldier. It remains to be seen whether they will be changing the origins of the character. I personally always saw the character being a lot older as well.

However, on the whole, I am looking forward to seeing some new Hellboy on the big screen.

UPDATE: Ed Skrein has stepped down from the role and shared this statement on Twitter.

Total respect to Ed for making that decision and sharing such a thoughtful response to the issues.

The project is heading toward a September start and will shoot in the U.K. and Bulgaria.

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