In a story that is the epitome of “good news/bad news,” Universal has decided to quietly back away from doing its newer, inherently lesser version of Clue, one of the seven different Hasbro board games it agreed to adapt in 2008 out of pure spite for striking screenwriters. However, the project now lives on at Hasbro, which, with the recent announcement of Risk, has graduated to financing its own films in a telling sign of the state of the industry. It’s also still in the hands of Gore Verbinski, who still plans to direct a new Clue film from a screenplay by Burk Sharpless and Matt Sazama, currently carving out a niche for themselves as Hollywood’s go-to regurgitators for their Flash Gordon rehash, Dracula Year Zero, and a movie based on Atari’s Missile Command. Their Clue is said to broaden the familiar murder-mystery setting to “a global stage,” thus faithfully adapting the concept of the original game in much the same way that Battleship just stuck a bunch of aliens in there.
Speaking of Battleship, judging by the reaction to its trailer, that film seems poised to serve as a harbinger for all Hasbro adaptations to come, which is why many will likely speculate that its predicted doom has a lot to do with Universal backing away from doing any more of these things just yet. But as Deadline says, Universal is merely concentrating on the ones that “make the most sense for the studio.” Those that do not make sense, apparently: Magic: The Gathering, which seems to have a story and mythology that could actually be like Lord Of The Rings, and the Ridley Scott-directed Monopoly. While Magic appears to be dead for now, Hasbro still believes in doing Monopoly with Scott, determined to help him make his searing commentary about the ramifications of greed through the magically transporting gameplay of a Jumanji or Zathura. Meanwhile, Universal has turned its full attention to Stretch Armstrong, the McG-directed Ouija, and of course, Candy Land and all its Lord Of The Ring-Dings ambitions. Again, these are ideas that make sense.
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