“Stranger Things” star David Harbour makes his first outing as Hellboy this year (premiering April 12), in the third film based on the Dark Horse Comics character created by Mike Mignola. While the first two movies were directed by Oscar-winning filmmaker Guillermo del Toro, horror director Neil Marshall has taken the reins for this iteration. Harbour recently explained how the difficulties of inter-species relations informed his take on the character.
“One of the interesting things to me about the Guillermo del Toro movies was that he had a love interest, right?,” Harbour told CinemaBlend. “But I just think that Hellboy can’t have a human being. He probably can’t have sex with a human being because it would probably end disastrously, because of his demonic parts or whatever.”
In del Toro’s “Hellboy,” the character, played by Ron Perlman, has a relationship with a woman who possesses pyro-kinetic abilities, played by Selma Blair. Their connection grounds him and is the reason he returns from the underworld to the human dimension. For Harbour, Hellboy’s motivation becomes much more complicated if he can’t experience a normal relationship with a human.
“I wanted to explore that loneliness, and you know, there’s the temptations that you have to– if you do create a darker world as the beast of the apocalypse, you can have sex. You can have a girlfriend. You can live your life,” said Harbour. “But to live in the human world and to protect humanity, you have to sacrifice some of your nature, and your actual nature, as opposed to this concept of destiny, just that your actual nature somewhat gets sacrificed.”
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That’s not to say the 2019 “Hellboy” doesn’t feature plenty of cool women characters; Hellboy will have to contend with Milla Jovovich’s Blood Queen, as well as Sasha Lane as a witchy fairy. Ian McShane, Daniel Dae Kim, and Thomas Haden Church also star. “Hellboy” opens in theaters on April 12.