As Universal’s Jurassic World continues to break records all over the planet, competing studios are working quickly to capitalize on the film’s success. The giant shark movie Meg just came out of development hell with Eli Roth in talks to direct, and now 20th Century Fox has paid big bucks for a monster movie pitch. Per THR, the studio has acquired a live-action/CG project called Shadows from writer Jason Micallef (Butter) for $750,000 against $1.5 million. The film takes place in the world of cryptozoology, a pseudoscience that involves the study of animals whose existence has not been proven.
Brazillian filmmaker Carlos Saldanha is set to direct Shadows, which will be his first splash into live-action territory after helming Rio and Rio 2 as well as Ice Age: The Meltdown and Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs. Saldanha got his start as co-director of animated films like Ice Age and Robots before making his solo debut on Ice Age 2.
While specific Shadows plot details are under wraps, Micallef (who is also writing Fox’s Play-Doh movie) reportedly wrote a 50-page outline that envisions a three-film franchise, and studios responded quite positively. Having already had an established relationship with Saldanha, Fox moved quickly, acquiring the pitch and setting the Rio 2 helmer to direct.
It’s no surprise that interest was high for a big monster movie, seeing as how Jurassic World has taken the globe by storm. This kind of windfall was to be expected, and Shadows won’t be the last monster-themed picture to gain steam in Jurassic’s wake.