Warner Bros. continues their week of putting big franchises on their production slate. A couple of days ago they took over “The Dark Tower” from Universal, yesterday they conjured up “Mandrake The Magician,” and now, a project thought left for dead is kicking back to life.
David Dobkin‘s “Arthur and Lancelot” is now back in the mix and headed toward cameras after being put on the chopping block at the end of 2011, and getting taken off the calendar from its previously slated March 22, 2013 release date in January. Originally set to star Joel Kinnaman (who has just landed the “RoboCop” reboot at MGM) and “Game of Thrones” star Kit Harington, the expensive film was hovering at a budget near $120 million, which made the studio wary given the lack of star power. But it now seems they have someone who is giving them a bit more confidence to push on.
Variety reports that Colin Farrell will take the lead, though it’s not clear which of the duo he’ll take. In fact, most of the details around the movie are under wraps, though the trade says it will be a “Braveheart“-style action pic, while reports last year suggested it was some kind of contemporary reimagining, though we guess we’ll find out eventually.
Farrell is an interesting choice. He’s a known actor, but who hasn’t quite become a bonafide multiplex star and likely commands a salary on the lower end of the scale that will be keep studio honchos happy. Frankly, it’s a bit of a surprising move considering his last big outing in a franchise was “Miami Vice,” and last year’s “Fright Night,” in which he was sold as the villain, did poorly at the box office. But perhaps everyone has their fingers crossed that “Total Recall” is a rebound and a big hit. And we would also guess that Dobkin has found a way to bring that budget down under $100 million to keep WB happy.
No word yet on when this will roll, but considering the casting process is starting over, we’d guess a little later this year.