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SYFY WIRE The Scorpion King

Stinging news! Scorpion King reboot in the works from producer Dwayne Johnson & Universal Pictures

By Benjamin Bullard
Dwayne Johnson in The Scorpion King

Watch where you step, because a prickly piece of early-2000s big-screen adventuring is heading back for the reboot treatment. Universal Pictures is reportedly planning to revive The Mummy spinoff story The Scorpion King for a new generation of moviegoers.

Described as a reboot and not a continuation of the original 2002 action-adventure fantasy feature, the new film is being developed under original star Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Dany Garcia’s Seven Bucks Productions banner, according to The Hollywood Reporter, which first broke the news. Oscar-nominated Straight Outta Compton writer Jonathan Herman is reportedly set to write the script.

Framed as a prequel to The Mummy series of fantasy/supernatural films starring Brendan Fraser, the first Scorpion King movie brought Dwayne Johnson over from The Mummy franchise for an early-career starring role. Johnson played the legendary desert warrior Mathayus, in a story whose events unfold 5,000 years before the events of 1999’s The Mummy and its 2001 sequel, The Mummy Returns.

Though Johnson reportedly won’t be coming back to play Mathayus in the reboot, THR reports he “may appear in the film in another capacity.” Beyond that, there’s no early word on casting, nor on whom Johnson and Garcia might tap to direct the new movie. Likewise, there’s no word on a projected release date.

Credited with giving Johnson his first major springboard into leading-man territory on the big screen, the original Scorpion King ended up stinging the box office for nearly $179 million worldwide against a budget of only $60 million. Directed by Chuck Russell (A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors), The Scorpion King also starred Kelly Hu (X2), Grant Heslov (The Monuments Men), and Michael Clarke Duncan (Sin City). A sequel came in 2008 with The Scorpion King 2: Rise of a Warrior, though Johnson didn't return for that straight-to-video release.

SYFY WIRE and Universal Pictures are properties of NBCUniversal, a subsidiary of Comcast Corporation.