After seeming like it would succumb to the depths of development hell, a film based on the Max Brooks novel World War Z is finally shooting with Brad Pitt in the lead. Marc Forster (Quantum of Solace, Monster’s Ball) is directing the movie right now, and the first photos of Brad Pitt in costume have been shot as the movie is in Malta, shooting scenes that take place in Israel. Check a few out after the break. Read More »
Posted on Tuesday, June 14th, 2011 by Russ Fischer
As the Marc Forster-directed adaptation of Max Brooks‘ novel World War Z gears up to shoot, one might marvel at the fact that the film will exist at all. It was on the brink of being scrapped for months, but then came back from the dead with a new financing plan. And just in time for Paramount, since it is looking like there is no way that the Star Trek sequel will hit in time for summer 2012.
Brad Pitt, against all odds, remains set to play the lead role of a UN researcher investigating a zombie outbreak. James Badge Dale was recently cast as Captain Spake, and Mirielle Enos will play the wife of Brad Pitt’s character. Now Matthew Fox and Ed Harris are on board, too. Read More »
After being stuck in development for years, World War Z found a new life this past spring when additional financing saved the project from being shut down altogether. Since then, the project’s been fast-tracked — likely in order to beat the deadline before Paramount’s short, expensive option runs out. Based on the bestselling novel by Max Brooks, Marc Forster‘s film will star Brad Pitt (who’s also producing), James Badge Dale, Anthony Mackie and Mireille Enos. Production begins this month, but it sounds as though a large chunk of the film will be shot in Glasgow this August. More details after the jump.
Posted on Friday, June 10th, 2011 by Russ Fischer
Ben Affleck bailed on acting in Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby in order to direct his third film, a picture called Argo. (Good choice!) The film is from a Chris Terrio script that follows a true-life story about a CIA effort to pull diplomats out of Tehran in 1979. The hook: they use a plan that has them posing as a Hollywood studio crew making a sci-fi film called Argo. (Much more background detail is here.)
The first piece of casting (other than Ben Affleck, who is taking a role) is now out: Alan Arkin will play Lester Siegel, the OSS agent turned film producer who is key to the plan. The role is described as “equal parts bookie and rabbi,” in which case Alan Arkin is perfect. But then, when is he not close to perfect? George Clooney and Grant Heslov are producing the film, and if that conjures up images of the tone of Men Who Stare At Goats — another partially true military/political tale — then you’re probably thinking along the right track. Only, let’s hope, better. [Variety]
After the break, World War Z and the G.I. Joe sequel get new cast additions. Read More »
Posted on Tuesday, March 29th, 2011 by Russ Fischer
There are a hell of a lot of zombie movies coming in the next year or two — so many that it almost seems ridiculous to get excited over one more. But when that one is an adaptation of a well-liked novel and has Brad Pitt set to star, it’s a different story. The film adaptation of Max Brooks‘ novel World War Z was recently said to be nearly dead, but now may have financing set, and is gearing up to shoot as soon as June. Read More »
Posted on Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011 by Germain Lussier
It seems like a no brainer, pun intended. Brad Pitt producing and starring in a Marc Forster directed adaptation of a popular book about a global zombie apocalypse featuring huge, innovative action scenes uncommon in your typical zombie film. World War Z has been kicking around Hollywood since before author Max Brooks (son of Mel Brooks) even published his book and, as it stands now, Paramount figures it will cost about $125 million to truly make the Matthew Carnahan script the right way. According to Vulture, though, Paramount is ready to pull the plug on the film entirely unless they can find a co-financier and that’s even with Forster agreeing to make the film PG-13. You read that right. A PG-13 zombie war movie. More after the break. Read More »
Posted on Thursday, April 22nd, 2010 by Brendon Connelly
Here’s some pretty solid indication that apocalyptic zombie epic World War Z will finally be coming to the big screen soon: Paramount have renewed their option on the book for what its author Max Brooks described as “half the time and twice the money”. That’s not the kind of cheque you just throw out there, so I can only imagine the studio is going to be making some serious moves to bring the film to life, and soon.
In his interview with Fear Net, Brooks also confirms that Marc Forster is still attached to direct. Will he stay attached all the way to the first day of shooting?
Posted on Friday, October 30th, 2009 by Brendon Connelly
It’s nothing like the merry-go-round of screenwriters but it does sometimes seem that pretty much all studio pictures go through a few directors on their way to the screen. Very often a director will board a project, wrestle with it for months, if not years, then depart. Other times, a whole list of directors will have passed pretty much as soon as they close the script and a project can find some time to find somebody willing to commit.
The last we told you, Marc Forster was going to direct zombie epic World War Z from a script by Matthew Carnahan. Some rumours bubbled up in the summer that he was off the project, but died down pretty quickly, and now word is definitely that he’s very much still in the driving seat. On the other hand, our last report on Joe Wright told you that he would be directing Keira Knightley in a new version of My Fair Lady and that, it has now become clear, isn’t the case at all.
What’s going on with the big screen adaptation of Max Brooks‘ book World War Z? J. Michael Straczynski wrote a screenplay, which seems like over a year ago, and Quantum of Solace helmer Marc Forster has been attached to direct. But aside from comments from Stazzynski or Foster here or there, we really haven’t gotten an update on the project in a long while.
Brooks, son of comedy legend Mel Brooks, revealed that Paramount Pictures has hired a new writer for the project, while making an appearance on Fangoria Radio. Who is the new writer? Matthew Michael Carnahan, brother of director Joe Carnahan, and writer of The Kingdom, Lions For Lambs, and State of Play. Brooks said that Carnahan is “one of Hollywood’s hot A-list writers, so if they went after him and paid him a mountain of gold, it definitely shows their confidence in this project.” Still no word an an updated production timeline.
Paramount has hired Quantum of Solace director Marc Forster to helm World War Z, the big screen adaptation of Max Brooks bestselling novel World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War. The 352 page book chronicles the aftermath of a great zombie-human war.
Changeling scribe J Michael Straczynski penned the screenplay, which AICN once called “a horror epic, a serious, sober-minded adult picture”, potentially “a genre-defining piece of work” with Best Picture potential (really?!). The basic premise of the book is that it is an oral history of the zombie war, compiled by an unnamed government employee. The movie follows this researcher, named Gerry Lane (possibly to be played by Brad Pitt, who is producing the project), as he travels the world conducting interviews with survivors, 10-years later. Forster told Variety that the story reminded him of “the paranoid conspiracy films of the ’70s like ‘All the President’s Men.”
The book was released in 2006, and is available on Amazon for $16.47. I’ve included the official plot description from the book below:
The Zombie War came unthinkably close to eradicating humanity. Max Brooks, driven by the urgency of preserving the acid-etched first-hand experiences of the survivors from those apocalyptic years, traveled across the United States of America and throughout the world, from decimated cities that once teemed with upwards of thirty million souls to the most remote and inhospitable areas of the planet. He recorded the testimony of men, women, and sometimes children who came face-to-face with the living, or at least the undead, hell of that dreadful time. World War Z is the result. Never before have we had access to a document that so powerfully conveys the depth of fear and horror, and also the ineradicable spirit of resistance, that gripped human society through the plague years.
Ranging from the now infamous village of New Dachang in the United Federation of China, where the epidemiological trail began with the twelve-year-old Patient Zero, to the unnamed northern forests where untold numbers sought a terrible and temporary refuge in the cold, to the United States of Southern Africa, where the Redeker Plan provided hope for humanity at an unspeakable price, to the west-of-the-Rockies redoubt where the North American tide finally started to turn, this invaluable chronicle reflects the full scope and duration of the Zombie War.
Most of all, the book captures with haunting immediacy the human dimension of this epochal event. Facing the often raw and vivid nature of these personal accounts requires a degree of courage on the part of the reader, but the effort is invaluable because, as Mr. Brooks says in his introduction, “By excluding the human factor, aren’t we risking the kind of personal detachment from history that may, heaven forbid, lead us one day to repeat it? And in the end, isn’t the human factor the only true difference between us and the enemy we now refer to as ‘the living dead’?”