Microsoft has responded to last week's news that the major studios in the Halo movie project have pullled out. The statement seems to be more of an attempt to calm fans of the franchise rather than to provide any solid information but it is still a positive statement regarding the future of the project.
We are disappointed that Universal and Fox wanted to significantly renegotiate the financial points of the deal. But the Halo franchise is hugely popular and our goal remains the same - to find a partner that shares our passion and will creatively collaborate with us to best represent the story and spirit of the Halo franchise. Peter Jackson, Fran Walsh and the rest of the creative team are dedicated to ensuring the Halo movie becomes a reality. We are already in discussions with potential partners who recognize the value of the Halo brand and its appeal to consumers worldwide
As we already mentioned, pre-production is already under way and WETA are working hard on the project already.
[[Studios Pull Out]]
Fox and Universal, the two studios that had agreed to finance and distribute the upcoming Halo movie, have pulled out of the deal following a breakdown in negotiations with Peter Jackson and Microsoft.
The studios, it appears, were concerned about the complete creative control the original deal afforded Microsoft and Bungie while there have been rumors that the budget of the project had skyrocketed to over USD 200 million. A spokesperson for executive producers Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh has denied the rumors regarding the budget and has told Variety magazine, The only budget the filmmakers every spoke about was $145 million less the 12.5 per cent rebate that you get from shooting in New Zealand, which would put it at about $128 million, that was the only number that was ever discussed.
This development may trouble Microsoft as it has always claimed it wants the movie as a big budget venture, something which can't happen without big studio support. Considering the popularity of the franchise and that pre production has already begun, it is unlikely that MS will not find some other studio to finance and distribute the Halo movie.
The most likely consequence of this breakdown with Fox and Universal will be a delay in the release of the movie if Microsoft fails to secure a partner very quickly.