Mike Fleming

Guillermo del Toro is at The Grove in Los Angeles tonight for a few hours that began at 7 PM to sign copies of The Fall, the second installment of The Strain vampire trilogy novel that he wrote with Chuck Hogan (whose book Prince of Thieves was turned into The Town by Ben Affleck). Published last week, the book has already hit No. 8 on The New York Times bestseller list. That’s a slot higher on the list than his first book, The Strain. Tonight is one of the last signing sessions after Del Toro did stops in San Francisco, New York and Seattle. He said that while fans are most curious about his plans to direct an adaptation of HP Lovecraft’s At the Mountains of Madness with James Cameron for Universal, many implore him to make one more installment of Hellboy.

“I tell them that convincing Ron Perlman is the difficult first step, because he just doesn’t have the same patience as he did when he was younger to sit through 7 hours of makeup, and to pump up like crazy and sprout horns.”

The question Hollywood is asking is when del Toro and Hogan will take their vampire series out for a film or miniseries deal. Del Toro said they are sticking to their plan of completing the final book before entertaining offers. “If I made a deal, I’d be thinking about an ending that would be a cinematic climax, one that adhered to MPAA standards and practices. And the most enjoyable part of writing this with Chuck has been not having any form of self-censorship, or any cap that you have when you’re writing a script.” When will they be done? “We finished the big outline six months ago.

“We are both writing chapters. Chuck has 100 pages so far. I’ve done 70. But I’m not halfway through my process and I won’t be done with my side until the week before we start At the Mountains of Madness. I’m still hoping to shoot in June. We still have a big budget presentation for Universal, but I’m really hopeful. The stuff looks just great.”