Posted Thu Jun 27, 2019 at 02:55 PM PDT by Steven Cohen
Test footage from the now canceled film has been revealed.
Though Disney's recent acquisition of 20th Century Fox might have some cool implications for Marvel fans, the merger has also resulted in its fair share of unfortunate creative casualties. Case in point: Director Wes Ball's now canceled CG motion capture adaptation of the Mouse Guard comic book series.
While the film was in development at 20th Century Fox with stars like Andy Serkis and Idris Elba attached, following the Disney buyout, the movie was abruptly canceled just two weeks before it was scheduled to start production. An exact reason for the cancellation has not been given, but reports indicate that the movie's budget or similarities to other Disney projects in the works may have been the culprit. And though the filmmakers were free to shop the title around to other studios, Ball recently revealed via Twitter that the project is now officially dead. Check out the tweet below which includes a quick tour of the film's production offices.
Yes sadly, its true. Our #mouseguard movie is dead.— Wes Ball (@wesball) June 26, 2019
Seems it's too big a risk. It’s a damn shame really. We had something special. To my hella talented cast/crew: I’m sorry I couldn’t push this one through. The past year with you all has been a blast. May the Guard prevail! pic.twitter.com/MGRq54uI6O
In the wake of the movie's cancellation, however, fans of the property have been left with at least one small consolation in the form of an early proof of concept demo. Meant to act as a previz test to experiment with the film's potential visuals, the footage was all rendered in realtime using Epic's UNREAL engine. With that said, the demo was only designed to serve as a testing ground for the film's look and was never meant to represent the final style. Instead, the talented folks at WETA were slated to handle the actual CG work, which would have aimed for a photorealistic appearance. Sadly, we won't ever get a chance to see what the team could have accomplished.
Check out the video below for a bittersweet glimpse at what could have been...
The Mouse Guard comic book series is written and illustrated by David Petersen. The comic is published by Archaia Studios Press on a bi-monthly basis. Here's a synopsis of the first collected edition via Amazon:
In the world of Mouse Guard, mice struggle to live safely and prosper amongst harsh conditions and a host of predators. Thus the Mouse Guard was formed: more than just soldiers that fight off intruders, they are guides for common mice looking to journey without confrontation from one hidden village to another. The Guard patrol borders, find safeways and paths through dangerous territories and treacherous terrain, watch weather patterns, and keep the mouse territories free of predatory infestation. They do so with fearless dedication so that they might not just exist, but truly live. Saxon, Kenzie and Lieam, three such Guardsmice, are dispatched to find a missing merchant mouse that never arrived at his destination. Their search for the missing mouse reveals much more than they expect, as they stumble across a traitor in the Guard’s own ranks.
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