This is not good.
Universal Pictures has taken the editing of its troubled 3D Japanese outcast samurai epic “47 Ronin” out of the hands of its first-time feature director Carl Rinsch says The Wrap.
The drastic move is reportedly in response to the project’s budget ballooning past the $225 million mark, though the studio is still claiming the pre-reshoots figure of $175 million. Universal co-chairwoman Donna Langley is reportedly now overseeing the editing of the movie.
Additional filming on the project wrapped in London just over a week ago, the extra shooting done to better incorporate Keanu Reeves into the film’s climactic scenes. In Rinsch’s cut Keanu was not even present in the final battle, now he’s there and takes on a supernatural creature. Other additions, from close-ups and extra dialogue to a love scene, are all designed to boost Reeves’ presence.
Even so, with marketing and promotion Universal will essentially need to take in half a billion worldwide just to break even on a film that even its greatest supporters admit was a disastrous production.
The intervention by the studio is being seen as a financially prudent one as they’re now in a better position to rein in costs. With the visual-effects being tightened to only the necessary shots and extra time given for post, the film will come together. The question is will it be the next “300” or the next “John Carter”?