Paradise Lost, the Milton classic tale of good and evil was set up at Legend -
- wait for it -
- dary Pictures had already pushed the film adaptation’s production back from the Spring 2012 start date to a Summer 2012 start date and a good amount of money had been spent to attach Bradley Cooper (he has no limits, guys) as Lucifer and Benjamin Walker as the archangel Michael. Those two were going to mess with the lives of Adam and Eve played by Camilla Belle Eve and Diego Boneta. Alex Proyas was going to direct.
Thing is, a huge CGI angel battle between good and evil isn’t that cheap to make. Already rumors that Legendary had crossed into the eight-figure arena before the film was even ready to begin production meant that they needed to curb the ballooning budget and fast.
Legendary set a goal to bring the Paradise Lost project in under $120 million and once they went about 10-15% over that budget, Legendary rained on the financier’s party. Considering millions are already at stake, green-lighting the film would trigger Pay or Play contracts for those involved (meaning that they would get paid regardless, even if the movie never made it into production).
Get it? Much like Disney’s Lone Ranger, Paradise Lost isn’t so much dead as killed before it was buried deep in the ground never to return. Now, the project still exists, the work that has been done on it has been done and the creative forces behind it can sit back and wait for WETA or ILM to come up with a cheaper way to make angel battles.
If you’d like this exact same information but with a lot of haughty side prose about how awesome DHD is, you can check Deadline.