Hulu users are currently spending time with Brendan Fraser. While the actor has a long list of classic movies, one of the most popular has always been The Mummy franchise he starred in with Rachel Weisz. Both The Mummy and The Mummy Returns are on Hulu right now, with the first as the second most-watched title on the platform and the sequel the tenth most-watched.
If you look up the genre for The Mummy, they’ll list it as action, adventure, and fantasy. While this movie has all of those qualities, it misses just how hard they brought the comedy in this one. Brendan Fraser plays Rick O’Connell, an adventurer who’s found himself in some tricky spots. The movie begins with him in an Egyptian prison waiting to be executed. Rachel Weisz plays Evelyn, a clumsy librarian desperate to be an explorer and adventurer like her parents and brother. We meet her character as she attempts to shelve a book and proceeds to knock over every shelf in the library like a game of dominos.
When Evelyn’s brother shows up he shows her an artifact he’s recent stolen off some guys. She discovers that he’s actually holding the key to finding the ancient city of Hamunaptra. She sees her big chance to go on a real adventure. But she needs a guide. So, she negotiates a deal to free Brendan Fraser’s character from prison, and the journey begins!
Even if it’s been a while since you’ve seen this movie, you may remember lines like, “Hey B, looks to me like you’re on the wrong side of the river.” Or the time the big scary mummy sees a kitty cat and turns into a giant CGI blob of sand. Or all of the flirting between Evelyn and Rick. In a classic moment, the mummy roars in Brendan Fraser’s face. He’s already run for his life. He’s already fought back in vain. He has nothing else to do. And so he leans in and screams back in the mummy’s face.
The Mummy embraces cheesiness, slapstick comedy, action, adventure, and is all around a good time. It’s no wonder that twenty years after we saw Brendan Fraser in the first movie, Hulu users are bringing the film to the top of the charts.
Back in 1999, the first movie brought in a solid $416.4 million at the box office. Typically, a sequel isn’t going to bring in as much money as the first, but studios hope to hit closer. The Mummy Returns released in 2001 and slightly outearned the first film with $435 million at the box office. The sequel kept its original cast. Brendan Fraser’s Rick O’Connell was now married to Weisz’s Evelyn and the pair were facing off with the same villain from the original, Imhotep, as well as a new darker evil.
While The Mummy Returns did well at the box office, it wasn’t as well-loved by audiences as the original. This was likely because the humor and chemistry between the characters was more surprising and fresh the first time around. The sequel didn’t capture it as well and for Brendan Fraser that was the end of the franchise.
In 2008, Brendan Fraser returned for a third movie in the franchise. The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor still earned a strong $403.4 million at the box office. This was a surprise since a different actress played Fraser’s wife in the movie. While there have been a lot of rumors over the years as to why Rachel Weisz wasn’t in the third Mummy film, she said in an interview around the time that it was because the five months of filming in China didn’t fit in with obligations she’d already agreed to for other films.
All these years later, and with that disappointing Tom Cruise The Mummy movie (unrelated), fans are still asking about The Mummy 4. In a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Brendan Fraser discussed what would have happened in the fourth movie. He said that at the time, Universal Studios was trying to create a Dark Universe. In that pursuit, they left the fourth film for the franchise behind. He said the story “would have seen the O’Connells face off against Aztec mummies in South America with Antonio Banderas playing the villain”.
While it seems far-fetched to make The Mummy 4 happen at this point, nothing is impossible. Brendan Fraser has said that if the story was there and the same people involved were interested, he’d be up for it.
While Brendan Fraser stepped back from the spotlight involving blockbuster motion pictures several years ago, he’s currently building back up to his next major movie. Director Darren Aronofsky and Fraser will be working together on a movie for The Whale. The writer who did the script for the play of the same name is writing the adaptation.
Hopefully, this will be the start of seeing Brendan Fraser in more new projects soon. For now, fans can rewatch The Mummy and its sequel on Hulu.