A few lifetimes ago I acquired the rights to a novel I loved about a giant shark and a year later Guillermo del Toro was involved as well as producer Lloyd Levin and we had a deal at New Line. Then Jan de Bont came onboard to direct, Shane Salerno wrote a few drafts based on book author’s Steve Alten’s original script, and we were off to the races. The studio then made some bad financial decisions and MEG was the collateral damage. Then development hell happened and MEG went from a much-publicized Summer movie to one of those Hollywood stories of ones that got away.
MEG tells the tale of a prehistoric shark somehow having survived in the depths rising to the surface to wreak havoc on the populace and it owes much more of a debt to Jaws and Jurassic Park than it does the modern spate of SyFy gimmick monster movies. Like its title character, the film has risen from the depths, this time at Warner Bros. Eli Roth had been slated to helm the picture but rumors abound that he wasn’t enough to land a big star. Enter Jon Turtletaub, director of National Treasure.
It appears MEG has a fighting chance and if anyone deserves a little success it’s author Steve Alten. A great man and writer he’s been grinding it for three decades hoping for this moment, all the while battling Parkinson’s Disease and a literary industry that crushes more careers than it preserves. Per Deadline, Turtletaub appears to have found his leading man in Jason Statham. If this one makes it to the finish line, what’s the next long-dormant movie we can hope gets a chance at life?
The artwork in this article is concept art from our original version of the film.