It’s alleged that the budget for “Masters of the Universe” was over $200 million or just under six episodes of “Stranger Things.” The film would have brought the rivalry between He-Man and Skeletor to live-action for the first time since 1987 when Dolph Lundgren starred as the Man with the Sword of Power. Production on the film was supposed to begin in February 2024 (pending the length of the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes, which are the result of AMPTP failing to negotiate an acceptable contract), but Netflix lost over $50 billion in value in April of 2022, and they seem to be making it everyone else’s problem. A source familiar with Netflix told Variety that the drop in Netflix’s stock had nothing to do with the budgetary issues of “Masters of the Universe,” but it seems like they still weren’t sold on more He-Man.
Variety also reports that producers tried to haggle for a $180 million budget, but Netflix still wasn’t having it. There were even whispers about shooting the film and a proposed sequel at the same time to try and maximize shooting costs. But, as we’ve learned with the news break, Netflix still isn’t down to play. Given the current state of the industry, “Masters of the Universe” is more than likely done for good.
Perhaps a different studio will want to revisit the property once WGA and SAG-AFTRA are given the deal they deserve, but the powers at be might be too busy crying about not getting to buy a new yacht and finally having to release transparent viewership numbers at that point to care.