The last time we saw red-hot lovers/demon warriors Hellboy and Liz Sherman at the end of 2008’s Hellboy II: The Golden Army, the duo were poised to embark on a whole new adventure: parenthood. But when Mike Mignola’s creation returns to the big screen next year after a decade-long layoff, the entire Hellboy franchise will be born… again. Earlier this year, Mignola announced plans to reboot the film series originated onscreen by Guillermo del Toro, and starring Ron Perlman as the title creature. The new movie will instead feature Stranger Things star David Harbour as Hellboy, while Neil Marshall will be stepping behind the camera.
No Del Toro and no Perlman also means no Selma Blair, who played the B.R.P.D.’s resident firestarter Liz in the previous films. Not that she would have considered returning even if they offered her the role. “My heart lies with Guillermo del Toro and his creations of it,” the actress tells Yahoo Moves at the Toronto International Film Festival, where, coincidentally enough, both she and her former director are promoting movies. (Del Toro is on the festival circuit with his rapturously received supernatural romance, The Shape of Water, while Blair appears in the crowd-pleasing midnight movie Mom and Dad, opposite Nicolas Cage.) “My Hellboy world is in Guillermo’s brain and that’s where it stays,” she adds. “They’ll do whatever they’ll do; it’ll be a totally different incarnation. My job is done.”
Having closed the door on Hellboy, Blair admits to not having followed news about the reboot, including recent headlines involving Ed Skrein’s high-profile departure from the film. The British-born Deadpool star was initially cast as Major Ben Daimio, a mysteriously resurrected Asian-American Marine, but withdrew from the role in the wake of the same whitewashing controversy that has plagued such films as Ghost in the Shell and Doctor Strange. That choice earned Skrein the admiration of many fans, and while Blair makes it clear this is the first she’s hearing of the fracas, she’s equally impressed by his decision. “There was a day when whoever acted the role best [got the part] no matter what race or ethnicity they were,” she remarks. “But I understand that so many people are passed over that are capable, and I think it’s admirable to say, ‘I bow out to find someone that’s trying to break into this business.’ It’s a new time for actors, and welcome to it.”
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