Barely one day after Legendary Pictures stopped production plans on “Paradise Lost,” Columbia and its sister studio, Screen Gems, have put the brakes on two other risky projects. Per The Hollywood Reporter, both “The Boys” and “Mortal Instruments” have been placed in turnaround by the studios, meaning unless another party comes in to help facilitate production costs, the planned films will be shipped to development hell.
Based on the comic by Garth Ennis, with artwork by Darick Robertson, “The Boys” was being developed by “Anchorman” director Adam McKay.
“I’m writing completely on my own on that, so it’s taking twice as long as it should,” McKay told MTV last March. “I am actually in the home stretch. I have about two weeks left on this draft and we’re going to try and get it made. It’s looking pretty cool. I’m excited about it.”
“The Boys” is about a group of CIA agents who keep tabs on superheros around the country; McKay described it as a modern-day version of “Watchmen,” because of both its subject matter and its incredible violence.
As for “Mortal Instruments,” Screen Gem’s planned adaptation of Cassandra Clare’s YA series had a director (Scott Stewart) and cast (Lily Collins, Jamie Campbell Bower), but that wasn’t enough to keep it on the right track. According to THR, Constantin Film might try to finance the film itself. About angels and demons, the film has been in development for a couple of years.
Is this a new era of Hollywood responsibility, or simply a case of studios realizing when its best to cut potential losses? Time will tell, but — for now — take a moment to celebrate not having to see a 3D version of John Milton’s “Paradise Lost” with Bradley Cooper as Lucifer in theaters. Too bad about “The Boys,” though; that could have been fun.
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