Before 1951's The Thing From Another World, John Carpenter's cult favourite The Thing in 1982 and, to a far lesser degree, the 2011 prequel, there was John W. Campbell Jr.'s novella Who Goes There? But even that story is adapted from Campbell's longer tale Frozen Hell, and now Universal and Blumhouse are aiming to make a new movie based on the full novel.
According to the team at Bloody Disgusting, who have been tracking the story, the original book was unearthed in 2018 by science fiction writer John Betancourt, who launched an appeal for funds to have it published. "In 1938, acclaimed science fiction author John W. Campbell published the novella Who Goes There?, about a team of scientists in Antarctica who discover and are terrorized by a monstrous, shape-shifting alien entity," Betancourt wrote. "The story would later be adapted into John Carpenter’s iconic movie T_he Thing_ (following an earlier film adaptation in 1951). The published novella was actually an abridged version of Campbell’s original story, called Frozen Hell, which had to be shortened for publication. The Frozen Hell manuscript remained unknown and unpublished for decades, and it was only recently rediscovered."
And with the full manuscript back out in the world, Universal was quick to snap up the rights, teaming up with Blumhouse for a new movie. Producer Alan Donnes reported on Friday that the deal is sealed. “It’s OFFICIAL! I received my signed contract and first check! I am Executive Producing a remake of The Thing but with additional chapters of John Campbell’s groundbreaking novel, Frozen Hell, that had been lost for decades. Now, for the first time ever, Campbell’s full vision will be realized on the big screen. The new film will include the very best of RKO’s The Thing From Another World, John Carpenter’s classic The Thing and both books, Frozen Hell and Who Goes There?."
There's certainly the chance here for a different film that charts its own identity apart from the other adaptations. Of course, it'll face comparisons to Carpenter's film in particular, but it feels different from the usual parade of reboots and remakes. We'll wait here for a little while... See what happens.