Bryan Fuller is currently busy bringing his new show Mockingbird Lane to life, a reboot based on the classic 1960s series The Munsters. The series' creator/executive producer also revealed that the show will feature some monsters from classic Universal Pictures movies, such as The Wolf Man and Creature from the Black Lagoon. Here's what he had to say in a recent interview, likening his use of these monsters to the Disney fairy tale characters in ABC's Once Upon a Time.
"Once Upon a Time has fairy tales. We have Universal monsters, which for me are the fairy tales of my youth. That's where I grew up, loving The Munsters, The Wolf Man, Frankenstein, Dracula, the Metaluna monster from Silent Earth and The Mole People. I would love to rope in all of those characters from those stories, as well as get the Cat People and get those types of things. But we can't just do Monster of the Week. They have to have a reason for being in the story -- an emotional capacity -- for us to interact with their characters."
He also talked about the look of Creature from the Black Lagoon, and how it was modeled after Splash, Too.
"The Creature from the Black Lagoon will be like [1988's] Splash, Too. When he's wet, he's the Gillman. That's one of the best makeup effects -- prosthetics -- that anybody has done, that monster costume. And when he's dry, he's a handsome guy."
The executive producer also talked about expanding to a one-hour format, as opposed to The Munsters' half-hour format.
"The Munsters actually do what monsters do: they eat people and they have to live with the ramifications of being monstrous. It's like grounding it in a reality because the half-hour was a sitcom, we saw the monsters: they were monsters on the outside and weren't monsters on the inside. For us, they're monsters outside and inside, and we get to double our story. So any story you can tell on Parenthood and V, we can tell. To have Eddie Munster be the starting point for the family -- because in the past, when Eddie was born human, they stopped living like monsters because they didn't want to damage Eddie. You get to this interesting thing with Lily, who's been hiding who she is for the last 11 years and now has to accept who she is after she's denied it for so long. It's those types of emotional stories -- yet they're going out and eating people at the same time."
He also talked about the first two versions of the pilot script, and how the show evolved into focusing on Herman Munster.
"The first two are relatively the same. It was essentially more on the scale of the heroes. The first version was where each of the monsters had individual stories that were woven together. Then it was from Marilyn's point of view. Then Bob Greenblatt came in [as NBC Entertainment chief] and said, 'I really want this from Herman's point of view.' I said, 'Well, this is what I was going to do for Episode 4,' and he said to make that the new pilot. It's an ensemble, but the emotional point of view is from Herman because it really is about a father who is realizing his child is taking after the other side of the family. He has so few things in his life that are his, and his son Eddie was one of them -- and now Eddie's more like Grandpa than he is Herman. Everything is a metaphor for something that you can identify with in a relationship; the fact that Herman is in a constant state of decay, and he's married to someone who doesn't age. We get to play with all those insecurities. The fact that he was made by his father-in-law and then has to live up to those standards; he's always trying to find his own identity."