New movie of 'The Thing' adapted from lost original novel on the way from Blumhouse

Ben Arnold
·Contributor
·2-min read
Kurt Russell in John Carpenter's The Thing (Credit: Universal)
Kurt Russell in John Carpenter's The Thing (Credit: Universal)

A remake of classic horror movie The Thing is on the way from Blumhouse, but not as we know it.

John Carpenter made the movie back in 1982, a benchmark of the genre, from a screenplay by actor and writer Bill Lancaster.

It found Kurt Russell's helicopter pilot and a group of scientists in the Antarctic besieged by their own paranoia as a shape-shifting alien parasite begins causing deadly havoc at a remote research station.

Read more: Stephen King on Bill Skarsgard’s It

Lancaster adapted the screenplay from a short story, called Who Goes There? by the American sci-fi writer John Wood Campbell Jr., first published in 1938 in the magazine Astounding Science Fiction.

The story was abridged for publishing, but was actually, originally, a much larger novel called Frozen Hell.

It remained lost until 2018, when sci-fi writer John Betancourt unearthed it and began a Kickstarter campaign to get it published in its entirety (it ended up receiving rather more than its original $1000 goal, hauling in over $155,00).

The Thing (Credit: Universal)
The Thing (Credit: Universal)

But in an update to the Kickstarter page yesterday, Betancourt revealed that a movie project based on the full book, which contains much additional back story, has now been green-lit by Universal Pictures and Blumhouse, and is being fast-tracked to production.

Betancourt, who is also writing a sequel novella to the story, added: “This is just the tip of the iceberg of what's going on with Who Goes There?, Frozen Hell, and The Thing in Hollywood. I can't talk about the rest yet, but it's very exciting -- and if all goes as planned, the Thing will be alive and well for quite a while.”

The original short story was made into the movie The Thing From Another World in 1951, produced by the legendary Howard Hawks, and starring Margaret Sheridan and Kenneth Tobey.

Carpenter then adapted it in 1982, with his practical effects-heavy version adding its own story elements.

Another less successful prequel movie, starring Mary Elizabeth Winstead and Joel Edgerton, arrived in 2011.