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Guillermo del Toro: ‘Prometheus’ Killed ‘At The Mountains Of Madness’

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Guillermo del Toro can’t seem to let ‘At the Mountains of Madness’ go. Universal pulled the plug on the director’s planned horror feature last year, with most of us speculating that it was the project’s escalating budget that gave the studio pause. And while that’s still a contributing factor, del Toro revealed another culprit that might have led to the demise of ‘Madness’ – Ridley Scott’s upcoming ‘Prometheus.’

Over the weekend, del Toro took to the message boards on his own official Web site to address Scott’s sci-fi epic and the connections it might have had to his ‘Madness,’ had he actually been able to film the movie. As he explained, ‘Madness’ author H.P. Lovecraft influenced Scott as he made his original ‘Alien,’ and so del Toro paid close attention when the director was returning to the ‘Alien’ universe for what’s rumored to be a prequel.

“Prometheus started filming a while ago – right at the time we were in preproduction on PACIFIC RIM…The title itself gave me pause- knowing that ALIEN was heavily influenced by Lovecraft and his novella. This time, decades later with the budget and place Ridley Scott occupied, I assumed the greek metaphor alluded at the creation aspects of the HPL book. I believe I am right and if so, as a fan, I am delighted to see a new RS science fiction film, but this will probably mark a long pause – if not the demise – of ATMOM.”

Can’t they exist separate of one another? If del Toro were to wait years to begin production on ‘Madness’ (and he’s already workshopped the project for decades), couldn’t he eventually get a unique spin on ‘Madness’ into theaters at some point?

Sadly, del Toro says the stories, he believes, are far too similar for ‘Madness’ to ever work out. He says the films offer the “same premise” and would have “scenes that would be almost identical” to each other.

“Both movies seem to share identical set pieces and the exact same BIG REVELATION (twist) at the end. I won’t spoil it.”

We’re thankful for that, though not for the fact that del Toro likely is giving up on making ‘Madness’ happen. Currently, the director’s hard at work on ‘Pacific Rim,’ and if it breaks the bank, it’s possible ‘Madness’ could happen somewhere down the line. But if Scott connects with ‘Prometheus,’ and it does a decent-enough job of telling Lovecraft’s story, that might be the version fans will live with for generations to come.

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