Last month it was reported that Yahya Abdul-Mateen II was in talks to join writer and producer Jordan Peele‘s spiritual sequel to Candyman. At the time it sounded like Abdul-Mateen II would be taking over the title role played by Tony Todd in the 1992 original and all of its sequels, but apparently that is not the case.
Director Nia DaCosta spoke briefly about the spiritual sequel recently, and revealed that Abdul-Mateen II actually wasn’t replacing Todd as the new Candyman. See what she had to say below.
DaCosta was speaking to Collider about her latest feature Little Woods when the subject of Candyman came up. While she only briefly touched on the project, she did set the record straight on Abdul-Mateen II replacing Todd. Or, at least semi-straight:
“Well, it’s been slightly misreported. I can’t say what’s happening in the film because we want it to be a surprise, but he’s not replacing Tony Todd. That’s been reported, and I was just like, ‘I don’t know what to say about this. This is not right.'”
There’s already been a lot of questions about the movie, which details have been quite scarce on, but this of course adds to the list. Maybe this means Todd still might play Candyman once again. That would be the best case scenario for fans of the series. Or perhaps it means that Abdul-Mateen II is playing a different version of the character who’s not even actually called Candyman. It would be massively difficult trying to equal Todd’s iconic performance as the character, so if you’re not going to use him it might make more sense to create a new character inspired by him instead.
DaCosta also spoke about Clive Barker, whose short story “The Forbidden” was the basis for the original Candyman:
“Oh, man, I love his work a lot, from Abarat to everything else. There’s so much specificity and dark whimsy in his work. Dark whimsy is not the right word, but there’s so much reality and truth in it, at the same time. Being able to take genre and expansive worlds and expansive people, and doing that as well as he’s done it, is a big thing. Also, there’s the weirdness of it that I think is really special, and how specific that weirdness is. That’s what I want to draw into our Candyman.”
Peele co-wrote the screenplay for the spiritual sequel with Win Rosenfeld, and Lakeith Stanfield was also recently reported to be in talks for a role similar to the role Virginia Madsen played in the original.
The movie is said to take place in the same Chicago setting as the original, which has since been gentrified.
Candyman is currently scheduled to be released on June 12, 2020.