(NEW YORK) — Hellboy is in theaters today. It’s a reboot of Guillermo del Toro’s two-film series, which originally starred Ron Perlman as the red-skinned demon hero. This new version stars Stranger Things’ David Harbour as Hellboy, and he tells ABC Radio he was quite familiar with the DC Comics source material even before the movies came out.
“I just love the comics. I was sort of introduced to them…when I was very depressed in my early 20s in New York, in sort of a darker phase of life,” Harbour says, referring to a time he’d battled alcohol addiction.
“And they really are very cathartic for that sort of thing, you know?”
In the movie, Hellboy is raised by a human father — played by John Wick vet Ian McShane — and becomes an agent for the Bureau of Paranormal Research and Defense (BPRD), a kind of Men In Black for the supernatural world.
As Harbour notes, “I mean it’s a it’s a crazy, dark sort of concept: a half-demon who was spawned by Nazi occultists and is meant to bring about the end of the world — but has a good heart and wants to be a ‘good guy.'”
But while Marvel has managed to create an entire decade of interconnected superhero movies, Harbour isn’t going there.
“[T]here are some Easter eggy sort of things and some open threads, but we weren’t trying to…set up franchise, or set up a universe,” he explains. “We just wanted to make great Hellboy movie.”
Still, he admits that the source material is rich for a sequel, noting, “Sure, like, in my wildest fantasies, there are so many threads…and so many great characters.”
Hellboy, which also stars Milla Jovovich and Daniel Dae Kim, is now playing.
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