What's Popping: 'The Lone Ranger', 'Ninja Turtles', ' 1984', 'Snow Crash', 'World War Z'
Just last year, Disney had to shut down Gore Verbinski's The Lone Ranger because they felt the $250 million price tag was too expensive. The principals (Disney, Verbinski, and Jerry Bruckheimer) were able to agree on a lower budget at $215 million and production was able to continue. Now, word is coming out that the shoot is days or weeks behind schedule and that the budget has ballooned back up to the original number. Rewrites are reportedly underway to bring the cost under control.
Another movie running into budget problems is Paramount's Ninja Turtles, a reboot of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise that is produced by Michael Bay. The movie was supposed to start production in October, but the studio had to push the start date back and ordered rewrites, hoping to bring budget down to $125 million. Bay revealed that the Turtles will be aliens in the reboot.
Brian Grazer and Ron Howard's Imagine Entertainment is producing a new feature adaptation of George Orwell's 1984, and they have hired Noah Oppenheim to pen the screenplay. The last time the book was adapted into a movie was back in 1984 with John Hurt starring as Winston Smith and Suzanne Hamilton as Julia.
Neal Stephenson's cyberpunk novel Snow Crash may finally get the big screen treatment. Paramount attempted to turn Stephenson's novel into a movie back in 1992, but it didn't get anywhere. The studio is trying again with Attack the Block's Joe Cornish attached to write and direct the feature. If anyone can do it, it'll be Cornish since his Attach the Block is similar in tone to the novel.
World War Z, the Brad Pitt-starring zombie apocalypse movie, has to have its release date pushed back to 2013 to accommodate reshoots, and now we know why. According people in the know, the project was in trouble from the start. The script was clearly not production-ready and the director, Marc Forester, was out of his element in this effects-heavy film. Compounding the movie's woes were turnovers at some key positions.
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