Here's a perfect example of a studio wearing its desperation on its sleeve.
We've known for a little while now that Universal and Len Wiseman are in the process of rebooting THE MUMMY. Set in contemporary times, the project has had PROMETHEUS scribe Jon Spaihts on board since the beginning.
But now it seems the studio is getting anxious to see the film move forward, so much so that they've hired veteran scribbler Billy Ray (THE HUNGER GAMES, SHATTERED GLASS) to write a separate MUMMY screenplay. Same project, two screenplays.
According to Vulture (the source of this news), "by hiring two screenwriters to work on competing Mummy projects at the same time, the studio believes it is effectively doubling its chances that it will at least have one Mummy script thatís camera-ready by the late summer or early fall."
In other words, this could be a disaster in the making. We all know that most Hollywood films are made by committee, but this is an especially cynical approach by a studio obviously eager for a summer hit. (They had costly disappointments in BATTLESHIP and THE BOURNE LEGACY last summer.) THE MUMMY is targeting a summer 2014 debut, so obviously they're feeling the heat.
Vulture's source notes that, ultimately, the studio might end up smashing both screenplays together to forge one ungodly Frankenstein's monster of a script. (That analogy is mine, not theirs.)
Fingers crossed Universal doesn't botch this the way they did THE WOLFMAN a few years back.
MUMMY hottie Rachel Weisz