director Alex Proyas and acting premier Andrew Stoner
The NSW Government has not lost any investment from the cancellation of Alex Proya’s Paradise Lost.
The big budget, Legendary Pictures film has been scrapped after a dispute over budget, according to US industry website Deadline.com.
As Deadline reports, Legendary Pictures made the decision to halt production after struggling to bring the picture down to $120m.
While the investment for the project by the NSW government has never been divulged, a spokesperson for the deputy premier told Encore: “Given production milestones have not been met, there has been no NSW Government expenditure on the production. The funds will return to the State Investment Attraction Scheme.”
In a statement today, Stoner said: “This is a blow to the NSW film industry and will be very disappointing to the filmmakers and the crew and cast who were expecting to work on the film. We will continue to take a proactive approach to marketing the State’s talent and facilities, especially in light of the high Australian dollar. We remain in negotiations with movie studios about other upcoming projects.”
The film was originally to have started shooting in Sydney in January with the Australian director of Dark City and I’Robot at the helm but was later rescheduled for June.
In July of last year the Paradise Lost announced it was coming to Sydney after acting NSW premier Andrew Stoner went to LA to speak to Legendary and Warner Bros Pictures.
At the time Stoner said: “When in Los Angeles recently, I met the team at Legendary Pictures and Warner Bros. Pictures, and encouraged them to produce Paradise Lost in Sydney. The NSW Government was determined to secure the production of Paradise Lost for the NSW film industry. To filmmakers and producers around the world I say, NSW is open for business once more – we are determined to make NSW Number One Again.
As Deadline points out – it does not mean the end for the film. Films such as Moneyball and American Gangster were resurrected after being scrapped.
The film was expected to provide an estimated 1,300 jobs to NSW, including 200 jobs in the VFX area. Digital Domain, the California production company set up a Sydney arm for the production.
The State Investment Attraction Scheme was also fundamental in bringing the new, animated LEGO film, announced in November, to Sydney. Animal Logic won the tender.