Cannon Film’s He-Man & Skeletor Coming To The MasterVerse!

The official Masters of the Universe Twitter account has announced that Frank Langella and Dolph Lundgren are joining Mattel’s MasterVerse action figure line!

OK, I will take the MasterVerse action figure series seriously if we get more of these rarities. The Masters of the Universe film from 1987 didn’t have the enormous action figure push you thought it would have back in the day. We didn’t get a film-accurate version of He-Man or Skeletor until decades later in Mattel’s MotU Classics series. Trying to get a hold of those figures now is pricey.


The photos show that He-Man comes with a dagger, Power Sword, and blaster. Skeletor is a bit harder to make out. He has the Havoc Staff and possibly some dagger attached to his belt. No Cosmic Key so far, but maybe we’ll get a Gwildor figure in the next wave?

Masters of the Universe was a less than faithful live-action adaptation of the Filmation cartoon and mini-comics. It was produced by The Cannon Group in 1987, alongside the company’s 30+ other films that year, including Over The Top and the disastrous Superman IV: The Quest for Peace. Cannon films typically had smaller budgets than other mainstream movies, which showed. However, MotU wasn’t what I would call “cheap.” It was a thrifty production, but the costumes and the few Eternia sets were impressive. To get the most out of the budget, director Gary Goddard and producers Golan and Globus had to set most of the film’s plot in then-current-day California.

I had just turned seven when the film was in theatres, seeing it on my birthday. While I was disappointed that the movie lacked some things I loved about He-Man, I remember enjoying the film quite a bit. Then again, I was raised in an early ’80s VHS rental store. So, I was used to seeing an array of terrible films, and MotU wasn’t one of those. It has serious flaws, but Frank Langella’s performance as Skeletor is worth the price of admission alone. Meg Foster also makes for a great Evil-Lyn. And, as always, I loved seeing Billy Barty on screen.

Dolph Lundgren made for a good He-Man as a physical representation, but his accent was the real inhibitor to his performance. It would have been the same if Arnold or Sly had been in the loincloth. The role calls for a charismatic man of great strength, and that’s not an easy thing to cast during the 1980s.

What did you think of the ’87 film? Let us know below!

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Mike Phalin
Mike Phalin
Longtime problematic entertainment journalist. The former workhorse for Dread Central,, and Fanbolt.

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