Bradley Cooper, whose The Crow bit the dust not too long ago, has just seen another big-budget project go down the drain. According to Deadline.com, Legendary Pictures’ Paradise Lost, which was put on hold a few weeks ago, has now been totally scrapped.
Inspired by John Milton’s poem, Paradise Lost was to have been directed by Alex Proyas, with Cooper as Lucifer, Benjamin Walker as the archangel Michael, Casey Affleck as the archangel Gabriel, Diego Boneta as Adam, and Camilla Belle as Eve. Among the many hands working on the screenplay were those of Stuart Hazeldine and Lawrence Kasdan.
As with Gore Verbinski’s Johnny Depp-Armie Hammer movie The Lone Ranger last year, and with (at least to some extent) Akira and David Dobkin’s Arthur & Lancelot more recently, the issue was Paradise Lost’s budget. As per the official story, Legendary was unable to bring costs down to $120 million. (Deadline adds that the studio has already spent "low eight figures" on the project. That translates into more than $10 million on a no-go movie.) Hollywood studios have been revising downward their movie budgets following significant drops in DVD sales and at the domestic box office.
Although it’s possible that Paradise Lost will be picked up again in the future, there’s no guarantee that the talent currently associated with the movie adaptation will remain on board. Moneyball lost director Steven Soderbergh (Bennett Miller replaced him), while American Gangster lost director Antoine Fuqua (Ridley Scott eventually replaced him).
For now, Arthur & Lancelot is still a possible go at Warner Bros. The Killing’s Joel Kinnaman and Game of Thrones’ Kit Harington are slated to star. Also at Warners, Akira is still on hold. The project is to star TRON: Legacy’s Garrett Hedlund, and possibly Breaking Dawn Part 2’s Kristen Stewart, Ken Watanabe, and Helena Bonham Carter. As per Deadline, the test options of both Dane DeHaan (Chronicle) and Michael Pitt (Boardwalk Empire), either of whom was to have played Tetsuo, have lapsed. (Among those mentioned for either of the male leads were Stewart’s Twilight co-star Robert Pattinson, in addition to Brad Pitt, The Amazing Spider-Man’s Andrew Garfield, James McAvoy, X-Men:First Class/Shame’s Michael Fassbender, Star Trek’s Chris Pine, and Justin Timberlake.)