The vampire and Lycan-fueled franchise, Underworld, continues to tread strongly through the list of action-driven films. The Vampire-Corvinus Strain Hybrid Selene, played by actress Kate Beckinsale, still remains the primary character in the newly released fifth installment, Underworld: Blood Wars. But will the series continue on to the sixth installment after such harsh early reviews? Or, is it time for fans to prepare for a reboot or possible TV series? Well, let's hope for the best and see.
Will Negative Reviews Effect things?
To be honest, there's a possibility for the series to continue as well as the chance for it to end. Even with the negative ratings that were given to Blood Wars, earning a high critical status has never been an issue for any of the films. Before the new movie, ratings on the previous installments were already in the negative. This began with the first film rating at 42 on Metacritic. Then came Evolution, reaching 36 on the scale, Rise of the Lycans holding a 44, with Awakening managing a 39 and Blood Wars bringing in a low 21. So, could the cost of budget and box-office really play a factor on its theatrical continuity?
Um. Maybe? You see, all five films overall budget is $212 million, while their worldwide box-office entirety lies at $513 million and counting. Blood Wars has managed to earn an engrossing $61.6 million from its budget of $35 million, though $45.2 million of the current revenue is from international territories, leaving $17.3 million from the United States. Compared to the international territory earnings of the past four installments, the current film has the second to lowest of the bunch.
- Underworld made $43,737,767 million
- Underworld: Evolution made $49,021,926 million
- Underworld: Rise of the Lycans made $45,282,848 million
- Underworld: Awakening made $97,791,632 million
The film has been out since November everywhere else, making its total accumulation good news. The current box office in the US is also great, since the movie opened with high numbers last Friday. The only issue is that it's the lowest opening for the franchise as well as the lowest North America box office ranking. To be clear, it's 49 percent down from the other installments and managed to open fourth at the box office, which doesn't scream much interest from fans of the series, let alone outside viewers.
A TV Show Or A Reboot?
Could this end the current theatrical line of films? Well, only if Screen Gems decide to end things or #KateBeckinsale doesn't return. That call may come only if there's a continuous decrease in box office, since the ratings were never an issue. So HURRAY for the fans, because this means there's a TV series still on its way, along with a sixth film. Director and producer, Len Wiseman has already proclaimed that the sixth film is being made. Back in January of 2016, he was also caught stating the chances of a television series happening:
"Yes, there’s been a lot of conversations and even development on what that series would be. It’s really appropriate for television, in terms of how those characters can really tie in, but also become something new. It’s really an attractive space. I don’t want to put a date on it because then that’s going to be printed and it might not happen in that timeframe, but it is a thought.”
Beckinsale is said to return to her popular role for Underworld 6 and though that's great news for fans, this will be her last in the franchise after 12 years, leaving the door opened for a younger actor. Rumors began to circle #TheoJames (David), stating that he would be taking up the mantle, but the actor reported to Toronto Sun last year that he will be absence from the sixth feature:
"No. It was a contractual obligation and I think I've told as much of that story as I could."
Later that year, he spoke with TooFab about another character taking the helm after Selene:
“I think David’s storyline is done. I think his arc has been fully realized. I think now is the time for the new characters that have been introduced to the story to take the helm, mainly Bradley James, who will be the next lead.”
This is Bradley James's first film as the vampire Varga, which doesn't translate well enough for the studio to grant him a leading role. That leaves Beckinsale to carry the story again with the newly cast Trent Garrett as Michael to tag along with her for possibly, the final film. India Eisley, who portrays Selene's daughter Eve, was physically absent during the recent title, which may happen again in the next installment. So, without Selene's protégé David at least taking on her role, it would leave a new Michael that fans weren't too happy about — a daughter that's only been active in one film and an unfamiliar character behind. Maybe that television show isn't such a bad thing to have now, huh?
The Future Of 'Underworld'
I'm sure fans have already noticed various characters exiting (or have already exited) the Underworld universe. This could call for a reboot of the series, though many wouldn't want to see the blood-ridden story carried on by a new character. Especially after #UnderworldRiseofLycans, (which Selene was absent for), didn't reach the length in box-office earnings as those she appeared in.
As of now, Rise of the Lycans holds the second lowest performance, leaving the latest adventure at the bottom. But that could still change, since #UnderworldBloodWars was just released last week. Only time will tell if it'll surpass the werewolf-centered feature, and only then is when we'll know if a reboot without Selene is a possibility. If that fails, the only option left would be the #TV series.
So, having an adrenaline-pumped television series about #vampires and #werewolves wouldn't be such a terrible idea, right? We've seen how well True Blood did on HBO and the many seasons The CW had given the popular series, The Vampire Diaries before its abrupt final eighth season. Why not an Underworld series that follows Selene –– with another actress reprising, of course –– beheading tons of enormous #Lycans? Especially having the same gruesome tone as shows on FX, Netflix and AMC, the series would feel right at home on television.
Underworld: Blood Wars is still raging on in theaters.
Do you think the Underworld franchise could survive as a TV show? Or without Kate Beckinsale leading? Let us know in the comment section.