With the hundreds of thousands of films made ever year, it’s of little surprise that more than a few of them slip through the cracks and never end up getting a release. More surprising it is, though, when the projects, like the ones below, seem imbued with so much promise, be it an ambitious, exciting concept that would surely capture the public’s imagination, or a star – either actor or director – at the helm. Here are 10 unfortunate, seemingly cursed films that never made it to the big screen, either cut down in the early production stages, or for unfortunate issues of circumstance, pipped close to a wrap.
10. Batman: Year One
When Joel Schumacher’s execrable Batman and Robin tanked in 1997, countless ideas about where to take the Caped Crusader’s story next were bandied around, the most intriguing of which was an adaptation of Frank Miller’s hugely influential graphic novel Batman: Year One, to be adapted by Miller himself and be directed by master filmmaker Darren Aronofsky (though at the time, he had only recently finished making Pi). In many ways, what Aronofsky pitched to Warner is what eventually wound up on the screen by way of Christopher Nolan; a move away from the camp that had defined the series for so long, back to gritty basics, with a more serious tone.
However, the studio balked at Aronofsky’s bold, dark vision, leaving the door open for a Nolan – who had proven himself far more capable (and willing) at handling mainstream, studio-friendly fare – to take the reins, and Warner haven’t looked back ever since. Still, there’s that nagging “what if?” thought, that Aronofsky really would have brought something different bur equally ingenious to the table.
This article was first posted on October 25, 2012