Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Watch: First Trailer For Tim Burton's 'Big  Eyes' Starring Amy Adams And Christoph Waltz Watch: First Trailer For Tim Burton's 'Big Eyes' Starring Amy Adams And Christoph Waltz 'Deadpool’ Spin-Off With Ryan Reynolds Is Finally Green Lit, Set For A Winter 2016 Release Date 'Deadpool’ Spin-Off With Ryan Reynolds Is Finally Green Lit, Set For A Winter 2016 Release Date First Look: Cobie Smulders & Guy Pearce In Andrew Bujalski's 'Results' First Look: Cobie Smulders & Guy Pearce In Andrew Bujalski's 'Results' 10 Films We Haven’t Yet Seen That May Be Serious Oscar Contenders 10 Films We Haven’t Yet Seen That May Be Serious Oscar Contenders Exclusive: Matthew McConaughey Won’t Be Back For ‘Magic Mike XXL,’ Director Says Sequel Will Be “Very Different” Exclusive: Matthew McConaughey Won’t Be Back For ‘Magic Mike XXL,’ Director Says Sequel Will Be “Very Different” David Fincher Says He Shouldn't Have Directed 'The Game,' Dislikes Superhero Movies & Talks "Crazy" '20,000 Leagues' David Fincher Says He Shouldn't Have Directed 'The Game,' Dislikes Superhero Movies & Talks "Crazy" '20,000 Leagues' Matt Damon & Paul Greengrass Are Returning To The 'Bourne' Series Matt Damon & Paul Greengrass Are Returning To The 'Bourne' Series First Look: Angelina Jolie And Brad Pitt In 'By The Sea' First Look: Angelina Jolie And Brad Pitt In 'By The Sea' The Best, Worst And Most Disappointing Films Of The 2014 Toronto International Film Festival The Best, Worst And Most Disappointing Films Of The 2014 Toronto International Film Festival David Fincher Says Differences Over Casting And Disney's Corporate Culture Stalled '20,000 Leagues Under The Sea' David Fincher Says Differences Over Casting And Disney's Corporate Culture Stalled '20,000 Leagues Under The Sea' Recap: 'Boardwalk Empire' Season 5, Episode 2 ‘The Good Listener’ Recap: 'Boardwalk Empire' Season 5, Episode 2 ‘The Good Listener’ Review: 'No Good Deed' Starring Idris Elba and Taraji P. Henson Review: 'No Good Deed' Starring Idris Elba and Taraji P. Henson Watch: Shailene Woodley Gets NSFW In 2 Clips From 'White Bird In A Blizzard' Plus New Pics Watch: Shailene Woodley Gets NSFW In 2 Clips From 'White Bird In A Blizzard' Plus New Pics Tom Hardy Says He'll Never Do Another Romantic Comedy Again Thanks To 'This Means War' Tom Hardy Says He'll Never Do Another Romantic Comedy Again Thanks To 'This Means War' David Fincher Apparently Thinks 'Dragon Tattoo' Sequel 'The Girl Who Played With Fire' Could Get Made David Fincher Apparently Thinks 'Dragon Tattoo' Sequel 'The Girl Who Played With Fire' Could Get Made The Best Documentaries Of 2014 So Far The Best Documentaries Of 2014 So Far The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The Best Films Of 2014 So Far... The Best Films Of 2014 So Far... The 10 Best & Worst Movie Sex Scenes The 10 Best & Worst Movie Sex Scenes All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More

In Memory Of 'Paradise Lost': 10 Lost Projects We'd Like To See Resurrected

Photo of Oliver Lyttelton By Oliver Lyttelton | www.oliverlyttelton.com February 16, 2012 at 1:00PM

Right now, studios seem to like cancelling movies more than they like making them. After a year in which the box office took a hit, and general economic problems continued, plugs were pulled on films from "At The Mountains Of Madness" and "The Dark Tower" to "Akira" and "Arthur and Lancelot." Only last week, Alex Proyas' Bradley Cooper-starring adaptation of "Paradise Lost," having already been pushed back in an attempt to bring the budget down, was canceled altogether by Legendary Pictures.
7
Yiddish Policemen's Union

"The Yiddish Policemen's Union"
What Killed It? Having only ever made original projects for the first twenty years of their career, it's a little odd that the Coen Brothers had their greatest successes with adaptations: the Oscar-winning "No Country For Old Men" from Cormac McCarthy's book, and "True Grit," from Charles Portis'. But they've also had more trouble getting adaptations made. They planned a wordless take on James Dickey's brutal WW2 survival tale "To The White Sea" with Brad Pitt, but couldn't get financing, while they could never crack Elmore Leonard's "Cuba Libre" (which was, to be fair, only a screenwriting gig). But the most recent is the one for which perhaps they were the best fit: "The Yiddish Policeman's Union," an alternative universe noir set in a world where Alaska became a Jewish state after the Second World War. Scott Rudin had picked up the rights before it was even written, and brought the Coens, who Chabon calls his "favorite living filmmakers," on board straight after "No Country For Old Men." And no wonder as their sensibilities were perfect for the twisty plot and quirky characters of the source material. They were meant to tackle it after "A Serious Man," but "True Grit," and then this year's "Inside Llewyn Davis," took precedence, and there's been nothing heard from it for a long, long time.
How Could It Be Resurrected? Technically, it's never been killed, and the Coens have a habit of working on projects for years -- "Fargo" famously was sitting in a drawer since the "Barton Fink" days -- so maybe it'll be next after 'Llewyn Davis' But we wouldn't be surprised to see Rudin get it going again with someone else.

House Of Re-Animator

"House Of Re-Animator"
What Killed It? While the “Re-Animator” series isn’t exactly the strongest franchise out there, the first film is still a brilliant horror-comedy classic, and when series creator Stuart Gordon announced he was proposing a fourth film for theatrical release, we showed some interest. It wasn’t until we learned the premise that we became truly excited. Gordon intended to bring Dr. Herbert West to the White House, where his responsibilities included restarting the heart of Vice President Dick Cheney, while William H. Macy was set to play George W. Bush. We’re surprised the film got as much traction as it did, as they couldn’t shore up nearly enough funds to make the film happen until, sadly, it was no longer relevant. Gordon said in 2010 that he saw no reason to make the film anymore.
How Can It Be Resurrected? In this form, it's extremely unlikely, and Gordon's not made a theatrical film since 2007's "Stuck," focusing instead on theater work. But it's possible that a "Re-Animator" sequel of some kind could get going down the line, although a remake is more likely, ultimately.

Silver Surfer

"Silver Surfer"
What Killed It? Though talk of a “Silver Surfer” film has been around forever, the character has usually proved fairly hard to translate. Fox probably made the right move by placing him in “Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer” as a supporting character hinting at a rich history. Before the film’s release, they hired respectable scribe J Michael Straczynski ("Changeling") to spin off the character previously known as Norrin Radd into his own galaxy-spanning universe, with the film following directly on from his introduction in 'Rise of the Silver Surfer,' returning him to his home world and battling Galactus. Unfortunately, the film performed below expectations, and for the most part botched the characterization of the Surfer, an intergalactic do-gooder with near-infinite powers, and Straczynski said in 2009 that with Fox disappointed at how the "Fantastic Four" sequel performed, there was little likelihood of his project getting made, and nothing's been heard since.
How Can It Be Resurrected? Fox are moving ahead with a reboot of "Fantastic Four," with "Chronicle" director Josh Trank said to be the main contender to direct (though he says he hasn't been contacted about it), which means that Straczynski's version with Doug Jones/Laurence Fishburne as the surfer is dead and gone. The studio may try to launch a 'Surfer' movie off the franchise again, but it's likely years away at this point.

-- Oliver Lyttelton & Gabe Toro

This article is related to: Features, Paradise Lost


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates