Years before Cabinet of Curiosities, Guillermo del Toro’s At The Mountains of Madness movie was ready to begin shooting. Here’s why it never came.

Guillermo del Toro The HP Lovecraft Movie On the mountains of madness was set to begin filming but never got off the ground – here’s why it got cancelled. With Guillermo del Toro’s curiositieswhich included two adaptations from influential horror writer HP Lovecraft, creating such a buzz, now is a better time than ever to look back at other Lovecraft projects the director has attempted, including a On the mountains of madness movie. Guillermo del Toro’s films are known for exploring another side of monsters and fantastical creatures, both from his own imagination and from various sources, but the Mexican filmmaker is also known for working on too many projects at once and dropping most of them. Here’s why On the mountains of madness del Toro Lovecraft adaptation didn’t happen.


The director has been associated with a number of different projects, from The Hobbit to Fantastic tripbut one that fans were really looking forward to was Guillermo del Toro’s HP Lovecraft adaptation of the novella By the mountains Madness. The Del Toro Lovecraft film would have told an expedition to the Antarctic continent in 1930, where a group of explorers discovered ancient ruins and a very dark and dangerous secret attached to them. The “unfilmable” story seemed poised to break that belief with del Toro on board as director, but things didn’t go as planned.

Related: Why Guillermo Del Toro Left The Hobbit

Why Guillermo Del Toto’s Mountains of Madness Movie Didn’t Happen

Back in 2006, Del Toro and Matthew Robbins had a script ready for one On the mountains of madness movie, but couldn’t get Warner Bros. to finance the project. According to del Toro, the studio was concerned about the price and tone of the Lovecraft adaptation, which doesn’t have a happy ending or a love story of any kind—and it would be insulting to add either. The Del Toro Lovecraft film came back to life in 2010 when James Cameron joined as producer and Tom Cruise was set to star. Del Toro then confirmed that they would begin filming in June 2011, but another studio got in the way.

Now home to that most classic of monsters, Universal Studios, executives decided not to greenlight the project due to del Toro’s insistence on making an R-rated film rather than a PG-13. Del Toro later found a new home for his projects at Legendary Pictures, and thus another chance to make this film a reality, but with a different approach. said Guillermo del Toro On the mountains of madness could now be PG-13, but as horrific as he could make it and the budget wouldn’t have changed much. Unfortunately, the change in tone was not enough and the project was cancelled.

Since the film industry is more tolerant of R-rated content in films and even embraces it in some genres, if del Toro decided to go for it one more time, the canceled del Toro film On the mountains of madness could finally get its chance on the big screen and break the “unfilmable” curse that is supposed to be over it. However, this is not the only HP Lovecraft adaptation that del Toro has attempted The cabinet of curiosities covers several stories by the famous author.

The Lovecraft stories in the cabinet of curiosities

Crispin Glover as Pickman in Pickman's Model

Horror anthology series Cabinet of curiosities launched on Netflix in October 2022 to very high critical acclaim, as is usual for most of the director’s works. The show features more than one Lovecraft adaptation and has a 95% critic score on Rotten Tomatoes at the time of writing, with notable praise for del Toro’s signature style as executive producer of the series. The two Lovecraft stories were included The cabinet of curiosities is Pickman’s model and Dreams in the Witch House.

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Pickman’s model is about a Boston painter known for making terrifying creations whose unsettling art may be more grounded in reality than his critics first assume. Dreams in the Witch House follows a student from Miskatonic University who rents a room in the mysterious “Witch House” in Massachusetts – but the house itself could be cursed. Both of these stories are told in Cabinet of curiosities to high praise, proving that Guillermo del Toro understands HP Lovecraft and his work. In the end, two are better than one, and while On the mountains of madness would have been a great movie Cabinet of curiosities provides a wide enough canvas for del Toro bringing more Lovecraft adaptations to avid viewers.

A soldier in a frozen cave looks back at something in horror.

About a month after releasing his take on Pinocchio, Guillermo del Toro finally gave fans a glimpse of what his At the Mountains of Madness movie would have looked like. The director released a 25-second CGI test made for the film on his Instagram. Despite the clip’s short length, it offers a fully realized Lovecraftian horror that unfolds with a plethora of limbs and tendrils and grabs an Antarctic explorer.

Given Lovecraft’s focus on cosmic horror filled with unspeakable Eldritch entities, it can be difficult to create monster designs that live up to his descriptions. That At the Mountains of Madness However, test footage shows that del Toro’s talent for unnerving imagery is more than up to the task. It is currently unknown if more test recordings were made. While it still seems unlikely that Guillermo del Toro’s At the Mountains of Madness will ever be made, this footage at least gives an idea of ​​how the acclaimed director would have tackled this Lovecraftian horror.

Next: What’s Guillermo Del Toro’s Next Movie?

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