Amazon scoops up Masters of the Universe live-action movie after Netflix snub

(Image credit: Netflix)

During Geeked Week 2023, Netflix was proud to show off a new He-Man show: Masters of the Universe: Revolution. But apparently it wasn't so keen on going ahead with the planned live-action Masters of the Universe movie. After discussions with the filmmakers earlier this year, Netflix decided to take a pass despite spending nearly $30 million over two years developing the project.

But you can't keep a good hero down, and it looks like Amazon is riding to He-Man's rescue. The ecommerce and Prime Video streaming giant is in talks, which Variety says are currently "tenuous". These would require Amazon to draw up brand new deals to bring the film to cinemas and to Prime Video instead.

Why did Netflix pass on the Masters of the Universe movie?

As ever with the best streaming services, the answer is money. Variety says that Netflix wanted to cut the budget, which was in the region of $200 million, and decided to walk away when it seemed that significant cuts couldn't be made and that the filmmakers were determined to have a theatrical release too. 

Amazon is reportedly looking at similar numbers, but may also be interested in the film as a halo project. Amazon's new head of film and streaming, Courtenay Valenti, previously worked on the Barbie movie at Warner Bros. Valenti may be hoping that lightning can strike twice when it comes to live action movies about beloved Mattel toys. Variety suggests that the He-Man movie could be Valenti's "first big kill" at Amazon.

It's far too early to talk about a release date because almost everything about this movie is now up for grabs: not just the rights but the casting and the script polishing too. But here's hoping that Valenti is right and that lightning can strike twice: Barbie was a ton of fun, and there's definitely fun to be had with the He-Man universe too. 

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Carrie Marshall

Writer, broadcaster, musician and kitchen gadget obsessive Carrie Marshall (Twitter) has been writing about tech since 1998, contributing sage advice and odd opinions to all kinds of magazines and websites as well as writing more than a dozen books. Her memoir, Carrie Kills A Man, is on sale now. She is the singer in Glaswegian rock band HAVR.