Todd McFarlane got Spawn fans excited when he suggested that the upcoming film about the dark and gritty hero he created would be a hard-R horror movie. “I’m not going for the same crowd that Marvel and DC is going for; I’m going for the same crowd that horror film releases going for,” he explained back in December 2016. However, the writer-director recently clarified that the Jamie Foxx-led film won’t be a traditional horror film, but a “supernatural thriller.”

On Thursday, McFarlane spoke with, the same outlet where he had first teased the horror nature of the film months and months ago. This time, his tone was a little different.

“I hesitate on the word horror,” he said. “I’m very specific about not using that word too much. Because it has a broad definition to a lot of people.”

“Horror, to my wife or to a lot of people, it means, ‘oh, you’re gonna slaughter some co-eds in some blood bath or something,’” McFarlane continued. “I consider dialing it back to say it’s a supernatural thriller. So then it’s not gonna be a gore fest.”

For any Spawn fans who are also huge try-hard edgelords, this news probably is a bit of a bummer, but it seems like McFarlane is probably making the right call. Spawn — a murdered CIA operative who comes back from the grave as a demonic antihero in hell’s employ — is certainly a dark character, but to make a pure slasher horror film about him seems like a waste of the superhero aspects of the character. Sure, Spawn isn’t a traditional hero by any stretch, but the Image Comics character has superheroics in his creative DNA. There’s room for that in a supernatural thriller (a horror-adjacent genre, for what it’s worth), but a straight horror flick could make Spawn feel just like a monster of the week, rather than an iconic comics character.

Spawn does not have a release date yet.

Photos via Image Comics