EXCLUSIVE: Setting the leads for Arthur & Lancelot is proving as elusive as pulling the sword from the stone. Colin Farrell, who’d been in early talks to play Lancelot in the latest configuration of the David Dobkin-directed film for Warner Bros, is out. Scheduling is the reason, I’m told. There is a lot of prep and training required for the action heavy role of Lancelot, and it didn’t work out. Warner Bros, which rejected the project because it cost $20 million more than the $110 million that the studio was willing to spend, got back in the mix with the idea of pairing Farrell with Gary Oldman (for Merlin) and an actor to play King Arthur (I heard the studio approached James McAvoy and other actors). Warner Bros, which paid $2 million to acquire Dobkin’s script last summer, is eager to make the movie and cast will materialize quickly, I’m told.
This is the second cast configuration. Warner Bros, which dated the film for a March 15, 2013 release, had cast Game of Thrones’ Kit Harington to play Arthur and The Killing‘s Joel Kinnaman to play Lancelot. Even though Kinnaman was subsequently cast in the title character of MGM’s Robocop remake and Harington returns as a major character in the second season of the HBO series, the studio was being nervous about a big budget with unproven stars.
BREAKING: Warner Bros, which late last year put the brakes on David Dobkin’s Arthur & Lancelot, is once again in active talks to make the movie. I’m hearing that Colin Farrell is in the center of talks that aim to revive the project. The killer role in the movie is Lancelot, I’m told, and that’s the one that Farrell is eye-ing. I’ve also heard that Gary Oldman, who was offered the role of Merlin but didn’t take it, is likely to be re-approached. They haven’t figured out who’s pulling the sword from the stone and are looking for an Arthur.
You might recall that the studio, which paid $2 million to acquire Dobkin’s script last summer, wouldn’t make the movie because its $130 million budget was $20 million more than Warner Bros was willing to spend. Under terms of the deal, Dobkin got to shop his project around to other studios but nothing happened.
Where Farrell fits into the picture isn’t exactly clear. Warner Bros, which dated the film for a March 15, 2013 release, had cast Game of Thrones’ Kit Harington to play Arthur and The Killing‘s Joel Kinnaman to play Lancelot. Even though Kinnaman was subsequently cast in the title character of MGM’s Robocop remake and Harington returns as a major character in the second season of the HBO series, the studio was being cautious about Dobkin’s contemporary style re-imagining of the Sword And The Stone with two unproven … Read More »
Warner Bros has tweaked released schedules for a trio of movies this year and next. year. Rock Of Ages shifts to June 15 this summer from June 1. It’s moving into WB slot vacated by Jack The Giant Killer which moved to March 22, 2013 from June 15, 2012. Arthur & Lancelot is now undated from previously slated March 15, 2013.
STUNNER! Legendary Pictures Postpones January Start Of ‘Paradise Lost’
EXCLUSIVE: Legendary Pictures’ Paradise Lost isn’t the only film being readied on the Warner Bros lot to face a budget crisis. Arthur & Lancelot, the David Dobkin script that Warner Bros paid $2 million to acquire last summer, won’t get made unless the budget drops dramatically. I’m told that even though Warner Bros dated the film for a March 15, 2013 release and cast Game of Thrones’ Kit Harington to play Arthur and The Killing‘s Joel Kinnaman to play Lancelot, the back and forth on budget has gotten to the point that the studio has invited Dobkin to set the picture up elsewhere if he can. I’ve heard that what started as a $90 million (other sources said Warners would make it for $110 million) contemporary style re-imagining of the Sword And The Stone tale has a budget the studio fears could reach $130 million. The studio feels that is just too much for a movie with two unproven leads. After the year’s wild box office swings and last weekend’s paltry performance, who can blame Warner Bros for being cautious?
It is obviously a Warner Bros goal to tell the story of Arthur, Lancelot and the Knights of the Roundtable, because the Dobkin spec supplanted two others that the studio had in development. The studio is keen to see through Dobkin’s version of the film (the spec deal allowed Dobkin … Read More »
When Deadline broke news last month that Warner Bros has paid $2 million to acquire the David Dobkin spec script Arthur & Lancelot in a bidding war that involved Universal and Fox, insiders said the project would be fast-tracked. That was an understatement. The studio has dated the movie for a March 15, 2013 release. It’s a $90 million budget contemporary re-imagining of the classic tale that Dobkin will direct and produce, with Lionel Wigram with Jeff Kleeman exec producing. Dobkin’s about to open the Universal comedy The Change-Up with Jason Bateman and Ryan Reynolds. The deal essentially squashed several other sword and the stone pics that Warner Bros was developing. That included Bryan Singer’s remake of the 1981 John Boorman pic Excalibur, and the version that Sherlock Holmes director Guy Ritchie had with Trainspotting scribe John Hodge.
EXCLUSIVE: Warner Bros has locked a deal to acquire the David Dobkin spec script Arthur & Lancelot for $2 million in a bidding war that involved Universal and Fox. Script is a $90 million budget contemporary re-imagining of the classic tale. Dobkin will direct, and he just completed the Universal comedy The Change-Up. CAA reps him. Dobkin will produce with Lionel Wigram, and Jeff Kleeman is exec producer. I am at Green Lantern screening and will fill in the details later but you have to wonder if Warner Bros is cornering the market on King Arthur tales. Bryan Singer’s developing a remake of Excalibur, the 1981 John Boorman film based on Thomas Malory’s 15th Century work, and then Sherlock Holmes director Guy Ritchie has another version set up last year with Trainspotting scribe John Hodge. Will the first to pull the sword from the stone and get their movie into production be the winner? When a studio puts up that kind of money like was done for the Dobkin project, you can bet that is the one that takes precedence and you can expect the others to fade away.