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The sci-fi action film from DreamWorks would have been distributed by Fox and Disney, with Anne Hathaway and Chris Hemsworth in talks to star.
Based on the 2011 book by Daniel H. Wilson, Robopocalypse would have reunited Fox and Spielberg, who worked together on 2002’s Minority Report.
Spielberg spokesman Marvin Levy said the project was “too important and the script is not ready, and it’s too expensive to produce. It’s back to the drawing board to see what is possible.”
It’s unclear what project will be next for Spielberg, whose Lincoln has earned more than $145 million at the worldwide box office and is an Oscar front-runner.
Some in the industry wondered whether Spielberg would want to pursue Robopocalypse after the director’s 60 Minutes interview that aired Oct. 21, during which he said he could do an action film “in my sleep at this point in my career,” adding, “it doesn’t attract me anymore.”
Robopocalypse was to be the first producing project for Tom Rothman, the former chairman of Fox Filmed Entertainment — who, months earlier, had agreed to partner with DreamWorks on the $100 million-plus production.
The project was announced in October 2010 as Spielberg’s next movie after War Horse. DreamWorks picked up the book by Wilson, who has a Ph.D. in robotics, in 2009. Drew Goddard, who wrote Cloverfield as well as The Cabin in the Woods, penned the adaptation.
Production was set to begin in January 2012, but it was taken off the table after a couple of months as the filmmaker focused on Lincoln.
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