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Did Universal almost pull the plug on the $200M Battleship?

08.13.2010

With just 15 days left until filming begins on Peter Berg's $200 million BATTLESHIP film, we're now getting word that back in June, Universal considered pulling the plug on the whole affair. The budget was rising, a dicey concept (a big-budget spectacle based on a board game) and there are no proven stars (currently Taylor Kitsch and Rihanna are the big stars) leading the film. Universal has been struggling to get back on track and while DESPICABLE ME was a great step in the right direction, according to reports, there was worry that BATTLESHIP was too much of a gamble.

While Universal denies the rumor, The Hollywood Reporter says that in mid-June, Universal executives met to discuss BATTLESHIP and pull the plug on the film. They eventually decided to go ahead with the project but decided to limit the amount of on-water shooting to just five days (with the rest shot on soundstages in Hawaii and Baton Rouge).

It would not be the first time Universal has pulled the plug on a high-profile project before shooting could begin. It halted AMERICAN GANGSTER before replacing the director, replacing some of the cast and eventually restarting a few months later. It also dropped the Josh Brolin drama CARTEL, five weeks before filming was set to begin.

While Berg seems to have righted his ship (ahem...), it still seems there's some hand-wringing at the studio over whether BATTLESHIP can sink the competition. Hmm, anymore boat-related puns before I leave?

What do you guys think? Are you interested in a alien-invasion movie set at sea based off a board game?

Extra Tidbit: Why do I have a feeling there will be a big BATTLESHIP presence at Comic-Con 2011?
Source: THR

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3:56PM on 08/16/2010
Are they just...not aware that having a brand name stamped on something DOESN'T automatically increase it's profits? In fact, many times it will actually DECREASE profits and likability of the product?

NO-ONE has ANY interest in a freaking Battleship movie. An alien invasion flick, however, could be cool. But people don't think "alien invasion" when they see Battleship. They see "Battleship movie!" and think "wow that's fucking stupid".

Previous cases in which adding a popular brand
Are they just...not aware that having a brand name stamped on something DOESN'T automatically increase it's profits? In fact, many times it will actually DECREASE profits and likability of the product?

NO-ONE has ANY interest in a freaking Battleship movie. An alien invasion flick, however, could be cool. But people don't think "alien invasion" when they see Battleship. They see "Battleship movie!" and think "wow that's fucking stupid".

Previous cases in which adding a popular brand name last minute actually hurt the the other-wise decent end product:

Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within
Star Fox Adventures
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9:52PM on 08/14/2010

Weird Feeling about this

i have a feeling that this movie will actually turn out good. have a nice story, decent acting, and some great effects.

unfortunatly it will do the same thing Transformers did. Have a crappy sequal and open the door for have a dozen other crappy movies based on board games hoping to bank of this ones success. this prediction is a long shot and will take a few years to play out. but this is just what i fear will happen.
i have a feeling that this movie will actually turn out good. have a nice story, decent acting, and some great effects.

unfortunatly it will do the same thing Transformers did. Have a crappy sequal and open the door for have a dozen other crappy movies based on board games hoping to bank of this ones success. this prediction is a long shot and will take a few years to play out. but this is just what i fear will happen.
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4:18AM on 08/14/2010
big budget alien invasion movies i'm down with, but someone please explain how this ties into the boardgame. All you do in the game is take potshots at the other guy until you hit something, where do get a story from that?
big budget alien invasion movies i'm down with, but someone please explain how this ties into the boardgame. All you do in the game is take potshots at the other guy until you hit something, where do get a story from that?
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9:47PM on 08/13/2010
i'm not sure why Rihanna's in this movie (other than the fact that she'd look good in a uniform, or nothing).
i'm not sure why Rihanna's in this movie (other than the fact that she'd look good in a uniform, or nothing).
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+2
9:08PM on 08/13/2010
Universal messed up. The concept is terrible. The film sounds terrible. And to spend $200 Million on this? This is going to sink Universal.
Universal messed up. The concept is terrible. The film sounds terrible. And to spend $200 Million on this? This is going to sink Universal.
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4:23PM on 08/13/2010
This film will bankrupt Universal for good.
This film will bankrupt Universal for good.
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4:17PM on 08/13/2010
Oh no, my dream of a big budget movie made out of a dumb board game has been dashed! NO!
Oh no, my dream of a big budget movie made out of a dumb board game has been dashed! NO!
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2:47PM on 08/13/2010
i can see this being a prince of persia-type flop bringing in only $80-90m and being sort of an embarrassment for all involved
i can see this being a prince of persia-type flop bringing in only $80-90m and being sort of an embarrassment for all involved
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+3
1:33PM on 08/13/2010

Can't picture it!!

First, I can't picture this movie in my head!! Secondly, I think the cast should be replace with a more experience actors/actresses!! Third, I think U. should release the script and let people read it! Most often then not the public can tell of a movie is going to suck!! Fourth, the Cartel movie was a wrong move! That was script was flowing aroun,d and it was awesome!!
First, I can't picture this movie in my head!! Secondly, I think the cast should be replace with a more experience actors/actresses!! Third, I think U. should release the script and let people read it! Most often then not the public can tell of a movie is going to suck!! Fourth, the Cartel movie was a wrong move! That was script was flowing aroun,d and it was awesome!!
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1:14PM on 08/13/2010

Rhianna you kidding me

The girl can't even sing now she is staring in a 200 million dollar movie. I feel bad for universal, they are going to lose a lot of money.
The girl can't even sing now she is staring in a 200 million dollar movie. I feel bad for universal, they are going to lose a lot of money.
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12:55PM on 08/13/2010
The idea sounds lame.
The idea sounds lame.
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+5
12:53PM on 08/13/2010
woooow. I had thought this sounded like the stupidest idea I'd ever heard of for a movie... now I hear the details: "Peter Berg directing", "Rihanna and some name I don't know as the stars"... and was that a serious question, "are you interested in an ALIEN-INVASION movie set at sea?" It involves an alien invasion? I mean, honestly? Because I have no idea, and I don't feel like searching it online. Anyway, this sounds like such shit it boggles the mind. And for $200 million? To quote
woooow. I had thought this sounded like the stupidest idea I'd ever heard of for a movie... now I hear the details: "Peter Berg directing", "Rihanna and some name I don't know as the stars"... and was that a serious question, "are you interested in an ALIEN-INVASION movie set at sea?" It involves an alien invasion? I mean, honestly? Because I have no idea, and I don't feel like searching it online. Anyway, this sounds like such shit it boggles the mind. And for $200 million? To quote Michael Bluth: "Eh, that's an awful lot of money for the dumbest idea I've ever heard."
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12:47PM on 08/13/2010

Im Game!!!

I am game for any film especially if the concept is good, This has a good concept and after seeing friday night lights and hancock I am now lovuing peter berg my only concern is rihanna?? i mean with those ever incresing stupid fucking hairdos of hers and not being an actor will she bring the nessacary weight to this well i hope we can get someone like jason isaacs or any actor that can make this thing realistic instead of being camp or winking at us
I am game for any film especially if the concept is good, This has a good concept and after seeing friday night lights and hancock I am now lovuing peter berg my only concern is rihanna?? i mean with those ever incresing stupid fucking hairdos of hers and not being an actor will she bring the nessacary weight to this well i hope we can get someone like jason isaacs or any actor that can make this thing realistic instead of being camp or winking at us
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12:20PM on 08/13/2010
I want to see this movie made, but I find it funny how NOW they think this could be a bad idea/potential flop.
I want to see this movie made, but I find it funny how NOW they think this could be a bad idea/potential flop.
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+11
11:44AM on 08/13/2010
if your making a movie that is costing $200 million and Rihanna is your big star, than you deserve to be in whatever bankruptcy court this movie will puts you in.
if your making a movie that is costing $200 million and Rihanna is your big star, than you deserve to be in whatever bankruptcy court this movie will puts you in.
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11:43AM on 08/13/2010

Rihanna

has a huge fucking forhead... That is all.
has a huge fucking forhead... That is all.
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11:12AM on 08/13/2010
I just don't see how anyone can put a $200 million budget for this..
I just don't see how anyone can put a $200 million budget for this..
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11:09AM on 08/13/2010

The film features aliens?

Rihanna has musical talent, but acting? I'm surprised they didn't try to get Will Smith in this, that would have guaranteed them at least $200 million.
Rihanna has musical talent, but acting? I'm surprised they didn't try to get Will Smith in this, that would have guaranteed them at least $200 million.
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10:32AM on 08/13/2010
I would have thought there'd be a guaranteed audience for Rihanna hip-deep in seamen?
I would have thought there'd be a guaranteed audience for Rihanna hip-deep in seamen?
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11:39AM on 08/13/2010
heh nice one
heh nice one
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