Few superhero franchises have retained the underdog status of the Hellboy movies. Based on the character created by Mike Mignola for Dark Horse Comics, the two films star Ron Perlman as a demon who fights to protect humanity from supernatural threats.
Guillermo del Toro directed both releases, but with each film only turning a profit overseas for Sony and Universal, respectively, talks of a third film have remained simply that ever since the 2008 release of Hellboy II: The Golden Army.
Periodically, both del Toro and Perlman have weighed in on the possibility of completing the trilogy they started with Hellboy 13 years ago. Despite their enthusiasm to do so, the chances of it actually entering production have seemed slim, due mainly to difficulty securing the necessary financing. Del Toro recently gauged fan interest in Hellboy III with a playfully worded poll on his Twitter account, promising to arrange a meeting with del Toro and Mignola if he received more than 100,000 votes.
The results certainly were promising for fans of the franchise.
Informal poll (let’s see how many votes we get in 24 hours)
— Guillermo del Toro (@RealGDT) January 18, 2017
We have gone past the 100K votes. I will arrange the sitdown w Ron & Mignola to talk HBIII. No gurantee but we will discuss. Wish us luck!!
— Guillermo del Toro (@RealGDT) January 19, 2017
Fans have long hoped that del Toro, Perlman and Mignola would get the chance to resolve the Hellboy trilogy. So the impressive turnout isn’t exactly revelatory, but the fact del Toro’s poll provided only two positive options implies plans for Hellboy III already may be slowly in motion.
As the filmmaker said, the project is not guaranteed to happen just yet, though it does seem like something has changed for del Toro to tease forward movement on that front seemingly out of nowhere. Unlike Perlman’s persistent updates, the filmmaker has often been the practical voice of reason, citing the business obstacles Hellboy III would have to overcome to get made.
As far as we know, rights to the Hellboy franchise still remain with Universal. At this point, it’s unclear if del Toro and company will be able to shop Hellboy III around to other studios anytime soon.
The third film has long been talked about as the most epic (and expensive) of the bunch, with Hellboy either giving in to his destiny of ending the world or sacrificing himself to protect it.
With any luck, we’ll receive a more substantive update about the status of Hellboy III in the near future. If del Toro’s impromptu Twitter poll is any indication, fans might have good reason to be hopeful.
Robert Yaniz Jr.
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