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Spielberg's Lincoln in trouble?

Lincoln.jpgWho would have thought that in America a film about Abraham Lincoln would be so difficult to make? I'm sure Steven Spielberg didn't, but now he certainly is as news has come through that DreamWorks has been having some trouble financing it, mainly due to its own troubles in finding a studio partner and staying with them.

Paramount had been close to making the deal, and Spielberg has been waiting to see if that would come through and could continue with the film, however the news is that they've just passed and Lincoln looks in trouble.

To be fair the issue doesn't seem to be down to the film itself, but more the politics behind the studio, politics that I'm not going to get into and bore you to death but suffice to say that it seems to be Steven Spielberg's latest project Lincoln that seems to be suffering, a project he's spent a long time developing.

Lincoln is, or was we don't know yet, to star Liam Neeson as the President himself and would look at the last few months of the man's life, especially the assassination by the prominent actor and Confederate spy, John Wilkes Booth.

I'm not sure how far it will go into the Booth story and the assassination, but I do hope that the plans are that it does, for after the shot was fired point blank at President Lincoln's head, he survived for some seven hours in a coma with surgeons removing fragments of skull and bullet from his brain.

Meanwhile Booth escaped from the theatre and remained at large for twelve days before being tracked down in a manhunt and shot.

Not only that but there's the whole story of Lincoln to be had, and specifically his time leading his country through Civil War. It would make for a fantastic film and tell a very rich part of American history, so why isn't Hollywood leaping all over it?

The only explanation could be the DreamWorks politics and the way they seem to have alienated so many studios at the moment. Well that's what it appears when you read the more technical business aspects behind it all over at The Big Money through Latino Review.

Would you be interested in the Lincoln film, even if you are outside of America? I wonder if the studio's understood the potential they really would be walking away from the film? Perhaps there's also something about the potential Spielberg price tag on the production that has them concerned?





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well its official now anyway, the plug has been pulled on lincoln. guess it wasnt worth the hassle dealing with all the politics between the studios. wish they knew how many out of work people were counting on that movie for work!

Has it? I haven't heard that it's dead just yet, not officially anyway.

That's a good point, we never think about the thousands of people who are employed throughout the production of a film from the actors to the secretaries.

As a young director, Steven Spielberg (allegedly) asserted he would "whore" to get people into the theaters to see his movies. Indeed, it's what all of Hollywood does. But cinematic historians will have the final word on Mr. Spielberg’s filmography.

He also (allegedly) declared upon viewing "The Godfather" said that here was a level of artistic achievement that he could never reach...then doing his best work (to date) in "Schindler's List" and "Munich."

Notwithstanding the ability to multi-task as both filmmaker and mogul, what I glean in this present moment is the biggest mistake coming late in Spielberg's career: out of the apparent need to satisfy his partnership with Relativity (and hang on to their $500,000,000 commitment) Steven Spielberg abandoned the "Lincoln" film project when existing Paramount; the project now an orphan—and what could've been potentially the director’s personal best.

Ironic, isn't it, how in his long career, Director Spielberg has had every advantage that Orson Welles didn't have, following the release of "Citizen Kane" - and yet that flick, according to the American Film Institute is considered the greatest motion picture ever made ("The Godfather" firmly holding second place) all the while the AFI proclaims Steven Spielberg the greatest director of the 20th Century. It’s that “body of work” thing, one imagines.

Welles before his death ended up using his personal 35mm camera in making what would amount to little more than home movies, though doubtlessly striving to prove to Hollywood that "Kane" was not a non-reoccurring phenomenon. And like Spielberg, he also had to go a-hunting to fund his movies, but obviously with far less success.

The honest difference between them is that Spielberg has nothing to prove to anyone...except, maybe something to himself…and in “Lincoln” perhaps his last hurrah.

they pulled the plug al least for now. me and a large crew of people in the maryland/virginia area were all waiting for this film to get green lit. we got the call last saturday that they could not get the funding in time to do the film in the time frame he wanted to do it in. the new rumor now is disney wants to pick up the tab but not till the fall or winter of this year. a lot of us in maryland were really looking forward to the film because we have not had any work in our area for months thanks to our state government cutting our tax incentives down to almost nothing. we are still fighting to keep the 2 million left in the budget as it is. we have lost a few big shows because of it. Benjamin button was one of them. the original story took place in baltimore and they did scout our area but new orleans offered them a ton more money to do it there. there have been many others also. hairspray went to canada and that is a baltimore story from our great local director john waters. we dont expect it to get any better any time soon. the maryland film industry is at the bottom of the list for help from out government. they just dont understand the amount of revenue a couple of big movies can bring in for a state. for now we have to travel away from home for months at a time to make a living, that is if we can find the work. good news is the rumor of tom hanks bringing 1776 back to the area some time near the end of the year. our fingers are crossed!

Aww Billy, I'm really sad to hear that, it's a tough time just now and the last thing your industry needs are films being delayed or leaping off to be made elsewhere.

Hopefully Disney will save this one though, I really doubt it's not going to be made, it's such a big film I can't imagine it not happening.

Is 1776 filming this year?

last i heard is hbo has release money to the writer to write the script for 1776. preproduction could start buy the end of this year and filming would start the beginning of 2010.

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