ComicsCulture – The Films That Nearly Happened

After a conversation with the Analyst we both realised that there have been a lot of films, especially ones based on comics, that have gotten quite far along in the production process but for whatever reason were cancelled before a single frame of film was shot.

So in this new series of articles I’m going to have a little look at some of these films and ask what could have been?

From a proposed Superman V with Christopher Reeves, to an early 1980s Batman movie that was meant to star Eddie Murphy as Robin, to a very different idea for a Bond film, we’ll lift the lid on the movies we could’ve had.

Jack Nicholson as Lex Luthor? Nick Cage as Superman? Will Smith as Superman? Nick Cage as The Scarecrow? These all very nearly came to be.

Perhaps the most well known, and infamous, of these was Tim Burton’s Superman Lives. An unmade movie that is said to have cost Warner Brothers over $50,000,000. Yup you read that right 50 million US Dollars spent with pretty much nothing to show for it other than a leaked script and a few leaked costume test photos.

For some films, like Deadpool, this is a story ultimately of salvation with a critical and commercial success released after fifteen years stranded in developmental hell.

Others, such as Superman: Flybye and Batman Triumphant, evaporated in to the ether.

Some however, like Roger Corman’s Fantastic Four, actually got made. Not for public consumption mind you, as its never officially been released despite being made in the early 1990s, but rather for a studio to ensure they kept the character rights. Of course that film did leak but in many ways it’s the exception that proves the rule.

One thing for certain is that there promises to be more than a few surprises as we unravel the many sordid tales over the coming months.

If you’ve any ideas for abandoned film projects you’d like me to cover please leave them in the comment box below.