One of the most troubled film projects in recent film development history has been “MEG”.
Steve Alten’s book dealt with the modern day re-emergence of an 80-foot long prehistoric shark which can eat a Tyrannosaurus Rex for breakfast. The book came out in 1997 and soon after plans were hatched to turn the property into a movie.
Over a decade later and the project remains unproduced, despite a long history and many millions spent in development costs at both Hollywood Pictures and New Line Cinema.
Now, according to The Los Angeles Times, a new financier has stepped forward. Apelles Publishing Inc. has optioned the rights from Alten. Veteran producers Lawrence Gordon (“Die Hard”) and Lloyd Levin (“Boogie Nights”) remain attached to produce, along with Virginia-based film financing consultant Belle Avery.
Whilst at the now defunct New Line, director Jan de Bont (“Speed,” “Twister”) was hired to helm the project, using a script by Shane Salerno (“Armageddon”) and brought in a team of special effects and production experts to assist him.
Ultimately though the plug was pulled a few months before the studio was folded back into Warners earlier this year, a spokesman citing the project’s expense ($157 million+ budget estimates) along with the several producers already being attached to the project without the studio’s say.
Guillermo Del Toro and one of my oldest online mates, CHUD.Com creator Nick Nunziata, were previously attached to produce. Del Toro has since left the project.