UPDATE: Collider have further updated their story, and it seems that not only is Tom Cruise not participating in Mountains of Madness, but Universal scrapped the whole project on Friday. Del Toro will instead be directing Pacific Rim, described as “set in a future in which malevolent creatures threaten the earth, the planet must band together and use highly advanced technology to eradicate the growing menace.” Doesn’t sound as much fun as Mountains, frankly.
Tom Cruise will have bigger obstacles than the average sofa to conquer now that he’s signed on for Guillermo Del Toro’s At The Mountains Of Madness, an adaptation of H.P. Lovecraft’s novella about an expedition into a secret range of mountains in Antarctica that uncovers terrifying and ungodly sights, like 6ft-tall penguins. No, seriously.
Producer Don Murphy stated in an interview with io9 that filming is scheduled to begin in June and that the script is faithful to Lovecraft’s original text. Given how abstract a lot of Lovecraft’s work is, that statement should probably be taken with quite a large pinch of salt. Del Toro’s dark fantasy stylings should be a good fit for Lovecraft’s mythos though, so it’s more likely that the film will stay true to the spirit of its author’s writings, rather than a straight adaptation of a story that is more about exploration and discovery than action. Some might argue that much of Lovecraft’s power comes from his hellish creations being left to the readers’ imaginations to paint for themselves, but if his work is ever to be translated effectively to the screen, having an imagination as vivid as Guillermo Del Toro’s calling the shots is a good place to start.[io9, via Collider]
EDIT: According to Tom Cruise’s reps on Twitter, he hasn’t yet confirmed his participation.