Dark Castle Saves Dark Moon from the Shelf

With the announcement of the pulling of the plug yesterday on Roland Emmerich’s found footage flick, The Zone, Warner Brothers found themselves being a little gun shy with the production of The Fourth Kind director Olatunde Osunsanmi latest cinéma-vérité opus, Dark Moon. Good thing for him that Dark Castle is looking to salvage the project from oblivion.

As per The Hollywood Reporter’s Heat Vision Blog:

“Over the weekend, the Weinstein Co. announced that it had boarded the Timur Bekmambetov-produced Apollo and would release the low-budget sci-fi thriller in March. In the wake of that, on Tuesday, Roland Emmerich pulled the plug on The Zone, another “found footage” project that was to have started shooting next week.

Now Heat Vision has learned that yet another “found footage” project has been shelved — but this time another company is negotiating to pick it up in turnaround. Yes, the space race is still on.

Here’s the backstory: In mid-October, Warner Bros. picked up Dark Moon, a spec script written by Olatunde Osunsanmi (pictured below), for Akiva Goldsman to produce via his Weed Road shingle. Osunsanmi was also on board to direct the movie, which is in the “found footage” genre.

The genre’s conceit is that the footage purports to be genuine reels, tapes or files found after the person operating the camera expires or disappears. Alien invasion flick Cloverfield kicked off the recent trend, which also encompasses the hugely successful Paranormal Activity movies.

Like Apollo 18, Moon is based on the idea that NASA’s manned moon missions did not stop with Apollo 17. Moon follows a black ops mission sent to explore previously classified lunar discoveries.

But when Warners execs learned Sunday of TWC and Bekmambetov’s project, they got nervous. On Monday, a top Warners exec made calls to the Moon men to tell them their mission was grounded (put in turnaround).

Enter Dark Castle’s Andrew Rona and Alex Heineman. The execs at Joel Silver’s Warners-based genre shingle had read the Moon script and were fans. On Tuesday they brought it to Silver, who liked what he read and authorized the company to pick Moon up.

Negotiations are still ongoing, but Moon will now be financed and made by Dark Castle, with Weed Road still on board as a producer. The project will shoot this winter — ironically, for distribution next year via Warners, as per Dark Castle’s output deal with the studio.

Call Mission Control and resume the countdown.”

Dark Castle Saves Dark Moon from the Shelf

Uncle Creepy

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  • James Coker

    the only Dark Castle films i liked were “House on Haunted Hill” “Hills Run Red” and “thir13en Ghosts”…although Thir13en Ghosts is REALLY FUCKIN DUMB!

  • Vanvance1

    Dark Castle started with House on Haunted Hill; everything since has been a slow spiral down into ‘bleah’.

    Bring back William Malone.

    • GJW

      Hmm. Don’t know brother,I think they came on strong with their first few (if you liked Thirteen Ghosts and Gothika,I did. I even enjoyed Ghost Ship for what it was)) then sure a few easily forgettable but they sure made a comeback as of late. A strong 2009 and recently Splice.

      1999: House on Haunted Hill
      2001: Thir13en Ghosts
      2002: Ghost Ship
      2003: Gothika
      2005: House of Wax
      2007: The Reaping
      2007: Return to House on Haunted Hill
      2008: RocknRolla
      2009: The Hills Run Red
      2009: Orphan
      2009: Whiteout
      2009: Ninja Assassin
      2010: The Losers
      2010: Splice
      2011: Unknown
      2011: The Apparition

      “Well, for one thing, I think he was probably a closet homosexual who did a lot of cocaine. That whole Yale thing.”

      • Vanvance1

        Okay, I’m not being fair. I liked Ghost Ship, Orphan and Splice.

        I loathed Gothika, and found the rest forgettable.