By Edward Davis | The Playlist February 15, 2013 at 4:07PM
A little clarification on THR's David Fincher/"20,000 Leagues Under The Sea" report. Yes, Disney is debating whether to shoot the 3D tentpole in Australia and the trade reports there are lots of financial incentives to do so, but Fincher did his location scouting (and met with Aussie federal arts minister Simon Crean) six months ago. And yes, Brad Pitt is not set to star in the film, but that's not because this deal isn't done. Sources tell us Pitt officially passed on the David Fincher project after initially agreeing to take the lead about a month ago (the always finicky Pitt strikes again).
So where is "20,000 Leagues Under The Sea" now, status wise? Well, it's essentially greenlit with or without Pitt, the problem for Fincher is all the actors he wants -- the names are unclear at the moment, but Channing Tatum is one that came up -- aren't available to shoot until next year. This leaves 'Leagues' somewhat up in the air as it could have shot as soon as this summer had a lead been ready (and that window seems to have closed regardless). So, what's Fincher to do? Well, he's weighing his options still. He's obviously been keeping busy having directed Justin Timberlake's "Suit & Tie" music video recently. The thriller "Gone Girl" for Fox, produced by Reese Witherspoon, is a potential viable option for something to do in the interim before 'Leagues' could shoot, but it could also be a long-enough comittment that it bumps the undersea adventure entirely, which wouldn't be to anyone's liking.
There's the idling 'Dragon Tattoo' sequel, but for what should be obvious reasons, that project is going nowhere fast (and the sequel script by Steve Zaillian apparently needs a strong rewrite before it can go forward). Claims that Daniel Craig is asking for too much money are evidently hogwash and another smokescreen excuse as to why the sequel is still spinning its wheels (if anything it's Rooney Mara, paid an absolute pittance for the first film, that deserves and needs the raise). Don't expect that one to happen any time soon.
As for "House Of Cards," Fincher's excellent political series for Netflix starring Kevin Spacey and written by "Ides of March" screenwriter Beau Willimon, it's unclear if the director will be back to helm more episodes of the series due to his busy schedule and trying to figure out what his next feature is. Plus, considering James Foley, Carl Franklin, Allen Coulter, Charles McDougall and Joel Schumacher directed the episodes Fincher did not and the quality hardly dropped (he only helmed the first two of season one), insiders tell us that he feels like the series is in good hands and may not need him. The decision is up in the air as of right now, but "House Of Cards" starts shooting season two in March, so he'll have to make up his mind soon. We've also been told -- **spoilers (gasp)** -- a major character will be killed in season two. Who will it be? You'll have to stick around and watch the series to find out. -- with reporting by Rodrigo Perez