World War Z sequel halts pre-production
Work on a 'World War Z' sequel has stopped following a dispute over its budget.
The movie - which would see Brad Pitt reprise his role as Gerry Lane under the direction of David Fincher - had been in pre-production, with the intention to start production over the summer, but the process has now been called to a halt.
Sources told Variety the project was still in the early stages and Paramount had been looking to fill out the cast but the studio had concerns with the budget.
Though the insiders couldn't confirm what the issue was, beyond Paramount chiefs becoming "more and more uncomfortable" with where it was headed, the movie has now been paused and it's currently unclear whether it will go back into development or be shelved completely.
The original movie also hit budget issues in pre-production, and its costs spiralled further when producers famously brought Damon Lindelof in at the last minute to do extensive rewrites on the final third of the project, after filming had wrapped, causing a delay on its release, so it is believed studio bosses didn't want to end up in a similar situation.
Paramount executive Marc Evans previously admitted drastic action was needed following a screening of the movie, which saw the entire room fall silent afterwards.
He previously said: "It was, like, Wow. The ending of our movie doesn't work. I believed in that moment we needed to reshoot the movie.
"[I remember thinking] 'We were going to have long, significant discussions to fix this.'
"I said, 'There are two roads to go down here. 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 [in the third act].
"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.' "