Occasionally someone nails a part so perfectly that you think nobody else could ever do anywhere near as good a job. That’s how it felt when Ron Perlman played Hellboy in 2004 and 2008: like only he could possibly have done it, the perfect actor in the perfect role, the gravel-voiced giant with the Easter Island head playing a gravel-voiced giant with an Easter-Island-on-Mars one, imbuing this monster with pathos, depth and a sort of… sexiness?
It absolutely felt like nobody else could do the character justice, like the role of Mike Mignola’s hulking half-demon had been forever owned. Then, a decade after Hellboy II: The Golden Army, came the news that a new Hellboy film was in the works, helmed by Neil Marshall (writer-director of the amazing Dog Soldiers and The Descent as well as director of two of Game Of Thrones’ gnarliest episodes, ‘Hardhome’ and ‘Battle of the Bastards’) and starring Stranger Things’ David Harbour. This guy:
David Harbour, eh? thought the world. He’s a big guy, gravel-voiced when he needs to be, a good actor. This could be interesting.
Then the first image came out. It looked… really good.
The living embodiment of dadbod got RIPPED, yo.
And now another image has been unveiled, rendering Ron Perlman nought but a half-memory, a vague niggling at the back of the mind that maybe there’s something familiar about this, maybe someone played this role before, but you think no, no, they couldn’t have, how could anyone possibly have been this character before, how could anyone have done anything that held a candle to THIS?
Bloody, bloody, bloody, bloody, bloody, bloody, hell. Incredible work by everyone. That job-lot of red paint was not wasted. Hellboy is out next April (it’s been put back from its initial January release date), co-starring Milla Jovovich, Ian McShane and loads of fire.
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