Director James Wan is a hero of genre movies. Hell, it would be hard to argue Wan is anything less than the current king of horror. But even though Wan is perhaps best known for his horror movies such as Saw, Dead Silence, Insidious, Insidious: Chapter 2, The Conjuring, and The Conjuring 2, the man has also displayed a deft hand at the action genre as well with classics such as Death Sentence starring Kevin Bacon and the seventh entry in the The Fast and the Furious franchise, Furious 7. And all of that comes to a head this Christmas as Wan officially hits the mega-big time with his upcoming adaptation of DC's Aquaman.

But for all his skills at directing action sequences, just how the hell did someone as horror-centric as James Wan snag the job of helming this family-friendly epic underwater super-hero adventure? Well, as it turns out, Wan originally pitched the upcoming film to Warner Brothers and DC as - get this - a horror monster movie! And not just any "horror monster movie." Wan originally pitched Aquaman as an "Aquaman versus sea monsters" flick inspired by the likes of John Carpenter (Halloween, The Thing) and James Cameron (Aliens, The Abyss). Specifically, the filmmaker recounts the memory, saying this.

"I realized, wow, his character resides in this crazy, big world, and I could do something very interesting with it. I look up to people like Spielberg, Cameron, Lucas, John Carpenter. I'm a fan of genre filmmaking, naturally. So I thought I could make Aquaman a genre film, meaning a horror monster movie. DC basically said, yes, you can make Aquaman versus sea monsters, if that's what you want."

Now whether or not the finished film is as "John Carpenter meets James Cameron " as Wan initially envisioned, has yet to be seen. The movie opens this week though, so I'm thinking most of us humans on this here planet Earth will know all too well just how much of a horror monster movie Aquaman is when it battle-swims its way into theaters this Friday.

James Wan's epic Aquaman follows this winning synopsis: Once home to the most advanced civilization on Earth, the city of Atlantis is now an underwater kingdom ruled by the power-hungry King Orm. With a vast army at his disposal, Orm plans to conquer the remaining oceanic people -- and then the surface world. Standing in his way is Aquaman, Orm's half-human, half-Atlantean brother and true heir to the throne. With help from royal counselor Vulko, Aquaman must retrieve the legendary Trident of Atlan and embrace his destiny as protector of the deep.

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Wan directs the film from a screenplay written by David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick and Will Beall based on a story by Wan, Beall, and Geoff Johns, which was in turn based on the DC character created by Mort Weisinger and Paul Norris. Aquaman was produced by Peter Safran and Rob Cowan and stars Jason Momoa, Amber Heard, Willem Dafoe, Patrick Wilson, Dolph Lundgren, Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, and Nicole Kidman. Aquaman is all set to swim its way into your local multiplex on December 21, 2018. This story came from The New York Times.

Mike Sprague