Sad news for fans of smart, well-done zombie movies: Brad Pitt’s World War Z adaptation may never happen. But why? That sounds like such an awesome movie. Well, it isn’t for lack of braaaiiinnnss, but rather bucks. Z is a tall order of a film with an estimated price tag of $125 million, and frankly nowadays, that’s a hell of a lot of money for a studio to front all by its lonesome, especially when expensive films are becoming such a great gamble. Paramount’s housing the adaptation for now, with Marc Forster (Quantum of Solace) signed on as director and Pitt signed on as the star and executive producer, but it’s just not enough. The studio needs a partner to help them finance the film — a.k.a. the huge financial risk — or it’s likely that it just won’t happen.
Paramount does have a few prospects though. One, they won’t tell anyone about, and the other is David Ellison who’s backed Mission: Impossible IV and Top Gun II. With Ellison’s track record this seems right up his alley; as Vulture reports, Paramount president Adam Goodman promises “a big, kick-ass giant movie with Marc Forster and Brad Pitt.” By any standards that should be exciting, but the problem is that in today’s economy, even the most promising big-budget films are a huge risk. I hope I’m wrong, but we may have to accept that another seeming auspicious flick doesn’t even get off the ground long enough to even have the honor of being thrown on the cutting room floor.