Just how bad did things get when filming World War Z?
We all know that WORLD WAR Z was a troubled project plagued by delays, reshoots, and animosity between star/producer Brad Pitt and director Marc Forster. Now that we are approaching the release of the film, details of the problems are beginning to come together into a cohesive look at just what went wrong with the film.
The latest issue of Vanity Fair magazine features a cover story about Pitt and the movie's troubled path to theaters. One of the biggest hurdles was the budget that crossed the $200 million mark and what was described as an "incoherent ending" when Paramount executives viewed a cut of the film. It was so bad that they brought in Damon Lindelof to fix it. Lindelof is quoted as saying he gave the studio two options:
Is there material that can be written to make that stuff work better? To have it make sense? To have it have emotional stakes? And plot logic and all that? And Road Two, which I think is the long-shot road, is that everything changes after Brad leaves Israel.” That meant throwing out the entire Russian battle scene—or about 12 minutes of footage—and crafting a new ending. “I didn’t think anyone was going to say, ‘Let’s throw it out and try something else,’ ” Lindelof recalls. “So when I gave them those two roads and they sounded more interested in Road B”—which meant shooting an additional 30 to 40 minutes of the movie—“I was like, ‘To be honest with you, good luck selling that to Paramount.’ ”
Forster and Pitt are swearing up and down that the final version of WORLD WAR Z is the one they wanted all along, but something tells me that is them trying to put a spin on this debacle. I am definitely intrigued to check out if the movie is any good. I don't see a PG-13, 3D, zombie movie released in the summer starring one of the biggest stars in the world flopping at the box office, but is there still any potential to turn this into a franchise? I guess we will find out soon enough.
WORLD WAR Z opens on June 21, 2013.