It's looking less and less likely that the troubled update of The Crow will ever take wing.
When we last left The Crow, the movie was still slated to begin shooting despite losing its most recent star. Even though Jack Huston was the latest actor to drop out of playing the role made famous by the late Brandon Lee more than 20 years ago, producer Edward Pressman said that filming was going to start in early 2016 with director Corin Hardy still behind the camera.
Well, you can kiss all that goodbye, according to the Hollywood Reporter. The studio behind the film, Relativity -- which is just emerging from bankruptcy -- has a new chief named Dana Brunetti, and one of the first things Brunetti did after starting the job was fire Hardy. But that move was not without repercussions, because the producer who holds the rights to The Crow, Edward Pressman, has filed legal papers asking a court to prevent Relativity from any involvement in sequels, prequels and remakes related to the franchise.
Pressman originally contracted with Relativity for three movies, and the option on the first was exercised in 2014, with preproduction officially beginning last August once Hardy was signed on. But now, with Hardy's dismissal, the production has been delayed again, and Pressman apparently sees this as a breach of contract.
It sounds like Pressman wants to get his property away from a studio that is still trying to find its footing after a long and difficult financial meltdown. Relativity, meanwhile, wants its new president to retool the project as he sees fit, so it would not be surprising if Relativity fought back to keep the title in-house -- which could mean a protracted legal battle and slimmer chances of ever seeing a new Crow movie at all.
We feel bad for Hardy: His movie The Hallow showed a lot of promise, and he seemed dedicated to making this version of The Crow work. Hopefully it's not long before he lands a chance to direct another horror picture. As for The Crow, it might just be better at this point to let it go ... and even if the studio wants to cling to the property, the lawyers will probably keep its wings clipped for a long time. What's your view?