Ah, the Halo movie… it’s like Hollywood’s own Duke Nukem Forever. Well, it’s quite possible that DreamWorks just might pull a Gearbox on us as they’re actively re-pursuing attempts to obtain the rights to produce the Halo movie.
The Halo movie was shelved back in 2006 when the initial partnership between Fox and Universal went south. Lots of money was lost and people like Peter Jackson (who was going to produce it) and Neil Blomkamp (our home-grown director) were pissed because they’d spent a year working on it already. But you knew all of this! So what’s DreamWorks up to now?
Vulture, the entertainment section on the NYMAG.com website, is reporting that DreamWorks is in talks to obtain Halo movie rights, but is using the Halo novels as resource materials rather than the games themselves. Why on Earth would they do that? According to Vulture, this move could be a sneaky way of side-stepping any fees that would need to be paid to Fox and Universal, who lost $12 million in the initial attempt at a Halo movie based on the games. A new movie utilising a new source material essentially means a completely new project, therefore negating any need to reimburse Fox and Universal their lost cash.
Microsoft, Vulture elaborates, will likely be alright with the switch in focus of source material, as referring to the novels indicates a level of dedication to the Halo canon. In actuality, Microsoft has very little to lose on this as the risk is nearly entirely the studios’. All they need to do is authorise the rights to the film, then sit back and take a percentage of box-office earnings. Considering how Halo: Reach made $200 million in its first day of release, any further cash on top of the billion dollar franchise is just an added bonus.
There’s already a script on the novel Halo: The Fall of Reach and apparently Spielberg loved it. Of course, with DreamWorks comes Spielberg seeing as he is one of the founding members and one of the three initial owners of the studio. This is the second time there have been reports on his interest in making a Halo film.
So, a renewed attempt at a Halo movie possibly directed by Spielberg and hopefully based on The Fall of Reach? Colour me cautiously optimistic. If you’re interested in a recap of the events leading to the demise of the Halo film, then I thoroughly recommend reading the article on Vulture; it’s accessible and does a good job explaining just how quickly these projects can die.
Last Updated: October 7, 2010