The film reboot of The Munsters may have nabbed one of the original stars of the cult sitcom of the same name. Rob Zombie’s upcoming film has been casting some very notable names, including the Mistress of the Dark herself, Elvira (Cassandra Peterson) and he somehow managed to get Sheri Moon Zombie to star as a lead, and now the rumor is that he has gotten Pat Priest for The Munsters. Priest starred in the original Munsters sitcom in the 1960s as Marilyn Munster, a beautiful, good-hearted member of the monster clan who appears on the surface to be a normal human. While it is not 100% confirmed that Priest will be appearing in Zombie’s Munsters, the filmmaker and musician is well-known as a horror fanatic, and it would be very much in keeping with his knack for oddities to find a place for her.
The Munsters is the latest attempt to revive the property, which first premiered on CBS in 1964. Initially, the show competed with a similar spooky take on sitcom tropes as The Addams Family (which was airing on ABC), but quickly managed to find its place as a hit. It was created by the same producers as the archetypal family-friendly show Leave It to Beaver and in many ways, satirized its vision of a wholesome, All-American family. The original version of The Munsters only lasted two seasons, but found a new audience in syndication, developing a loyal audience to its warm, goofy take on the Universal Pictures classic horror monsters. There have been multiple attempts at a reboot or continuation in some fashion, including a pilot version of a “dark re-imagining” by Bryan Fuller called Mockingbird Lane. In 2004, it was announced that the Wayans brothers were to make a film version of The Munsters, which never came to fruition.
Rob Zombie has made something of a name for himself as a horror revivalist. He helmed a reboot of the Halloween franchise in 2007, followed by a very commercially successful (and critically bombed) sequel. He has also directed a number of original horror films, beginning with House of 1000 Corpses in 2003. His most recent film was 2019’s 3 from Hell, which featured the last performance from horror icon Sid Haig released during his life. Somewhat predictably, Zombie is a lifelong fan of The Munsters and has stated that he has been trying to develop a film version for over twenty years. Dreams can come true, Mr. Zombie.
If Pat Priest is appearing in Rob Zombie’s The Munsters, it may simply be a vocal part or a cameo in honor of the original series. Zombie has been releasing images and teases for the upcoming film over the last several months, and it looks like a combination of his trademark gore-shock and the classic look of the sitcom. The Munsters is planned to be released by Universal Pictures as a simultaneous theatrical and streaming release, with the latter being handled by the Peacock platform. It does not yet have a release date, but if it is not sometime around Halloween, somebody needs to think about their priorities.