Darkman: Liam Neeson Wants to Revisit Franchise with Right Script

With the renewed interest in older franchises, any actor or director will get the typical questions about their interest in revisiting them. Liam Neeson, who denied any current involvement in reprising his role as Jedi master Qui-Gon Jinn in the upcoming Star Wars: Obi-Wan Kenobi for Disney+, responded to another one regarding the role that helped launch him to superstardom in 1990's Sam Raimi's Darkman. While promoting his upcoming psychological thriller Memory, the actor spoke with Comicbook.com on the possibility of returning in some form for a reboot/legacy sequel.

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Liam Neeson as Peyton Westlake/Darkman in Darkman (1990). Image courtesy of Universal

"That's a good question," Neeson said. "I would be very interested in reading the script. Very." Raimi, who also wrote the script with Chuck Pfarrer, Daniel and Joshua Goldin, and Ivan Raimi, conceived of the story of the title character with Neeson playing Peyton Westlake, a brilliant scientist who develops skin technology that would benefit the health community especially burn victims. A run-in with the mob causes a lab explosion and Peyton is left for dead with serious burns all over his body. The unintended effect is that his adrenaline is constantly pumping out giving him super strength, but at times, uncontrollable rage. Driven by revenge, Peyton uses his technology to infiltrate the mob through disguise with unfortunate limitations of his artificial skin due to its long-term photosensitivity.

The 1990 film also starred Frances McDormand, Larry Drake, and Colin Friels. There were two direct-to-video sequels with Arnold Vosloo replacing Neeson and Drake reprising his role as Robert G. Durant for the 1995 sequel. Raimi, who has the upcoming film Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness coming out in May, does have producer credit for the upcoming Evil Dead Rise with director Lee Cronin the helm. It acts as a sequel in the shared universe with the original 1981 Raimi-directed film. In the very least, Werewolves Within director Josh Ruben expressed interest to Bloody Disgusting in continuing the Darkman franchise in some form with Raimi's blessing. Open Road Films' Memory, which also stars Monica Bellucci, Guy Pearce, and Ray Stevenson, comes exclusively to theaters on April 29th. You can check out our interview with Neeson here.

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About Tom Chang

I'm a follower of pop culture from gaming, comics, sci-fi, fantasy, film, and TV for over 30 years. I grew up reading magazines like Starlog, Mad, and Fangoria. As a writer for over 10 years, Star Wars was the first sci-fi franchise I fell in love with. I'm a nerd-of-all-trades.
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