Studios Prepare Productions for 2009
Gotta love those studio bigwigs. Even in the midst of an impending Screen Actors Guild strike and the greatest financial crisis in modern American history, these head honchos still have dollar signs in their eyes.
Variety is reporting today that studios are planning 40 or more films to begin production between spring and summer of 2009. Since June 30, studios have mostly resisted the urge to start production on major films due to the very real threat of the SAG strike.
The studios are betting that in light of today’s erratic economic climate, the actors won’t authorize a strike order to cease working. Plus, according to an anonymous dealmaker, "[do] you think a big star is going to have its union tell them who can negotiate their deal?" The studios are banking on no.
It’s a huge gamble. Variety cites production costs on studio-sized films at between $100,000 and $500,000 per day. If an actors strike occurs, studios can only retain their actors for eight weeks after the strike’s start. That could be a potential disaster for Tinseltown, which is already recovering from the effects of last year’s writer’s strike.
But enough doom and gloom! There’s movies getting made, and some pretty cool ones by the look of it! There are some high-profile films getting the gears going, such as Marvel’s Iron Man 2 and Thor, Disney’s TR2N, Columbia’s The Green Hornet, Universal’s Scott Pilgrim vs. the World and Warner Bros.’s Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, to be released in two installments.
There are some other projects listed that have been talked about for a while, but this is the first real indicator that movement is being made. New Line is getting to work on a Len Wiseman directed Gears of War, the script of which received rave reviews from Latino Review last year. BioShock will be released by Universal and directed by Gore Verbinski.
While it’s been widely reported that Green Lantern will head into production soon, Warner Bros. has another interesting comic project on their slate: Jonah Hex, with Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor attached as helmers. Earlier this year, speculation spread that Thomas Jane would star in the flick, due to this picture of him that circulated on the internet. Jane debunked the rumor, saying he was trying to woo studio execs into casting him — the photo was in no way officially tied to the film. But it’s certainly an interesting take, and with production getting the fast track, we’ll be sure to see something official soon.
Another comic property caught our eye: Diary of a Wimpy Kid, the best-selling book from Jeff Kinney whom we recently interviewed.
And, of course, the news you’ve all been waiting for: official movement on Brett Ratner’s Beverly Hills Cop sequel from Paramount, and Sex and the CIty 2 from New Line. Awe-sum.
Click here to check out the other films heading into production next year, including new projects from Zack Snyder, Drew Goddard and Ridley Scott!