Legendary has killed director Alex Proyas’s Paradise Lost. Based on the epic poem by John Milton, the film would have told the epic battle between the armies of the archangels Michael (Benjamin Walker) and Lucifer (Bradley Cooper).
Not surprisingly, it was budgetary concerns that derailed the project. The film was supposed to get underway last month in Australia, but was postponed after budget projects went north of $120 million. It was reported that the film would get back under way in June after some reworking of the screenplay with an eye towards bringing its costs under control.
Also set in the cast were Casey Affleck, Djimon Housou, Diego Boneta, Camilla Belle, Sam Reid, Rufus Sewell and Callan McAuliffe.
While I am sad to see that such a promising project has bit the dust, I can’t express much surprise that it did. Over recent years, studio execs have been becoming more and more risk adverse, not wanting to roll the dice on big expensive projects that don’t already have a pre-existing audience. Last fall we saw Disney’s The Lone Ranger postpone the start of production while the script was streamlined to get the budget more in line with what the studio was willing to spend.