So this is gonna be Big, Insane Story Week, huh? Yesterday we learn that Disney bought Marvel Studios and today we’re learning that Robert Downey Jr. and Jon Favreau will delay “The Avengers” and a potential “Iron Man 3″ to do Alex Kurtzman Roberto Orci, and Damon Lindelof’s adaptation of Fred Van Lente and Andrew Foley’s graphic novel, “Cowboys & Aliens”. I don’t know if I can take another insane story this week so click the jump as I try to process this one.
According to The Hollywood Reporter’s Heat Vision Blog Downey and Favreau are reteaming but they’re making “Cowboys & Aliens” their next project. That completely botches a 2012 “Avengers” because that year is now for “Cowboys & Aliens”. And since Downey is officially signed on for “The Avengers”, it means we’re seeing that in 2014 at the earliest. [UPDATE: Okay, so some took this as fact rather than my extrapolation from what I understand as the current time table so I'm sorry if there was any misunderstanding. Let me be clear: I have no idea how the production of "Cowboys & Aliens" affects any upcoming projects from any of these participants.] And if “Iron Man 3″ comes into the picture (and I can’t think of a reason why it wouldn’t) then we’re talking a project slate that hurts my brain to even think about it.
But here’s why I’m terrified: Downey’s starring, Favreau’s directing, Kurtzman, Orci, and Lindelof are writing, and Ron Howard and Brian Grazer are producing. You know how those fiasco stories can start with what looks to be the stars aligning and then the movie ends up painfully disappointing unless it’s one of the greatest of all-time? Yeah, that’s terrifying.
If the title didn’t clue you into the premise, the story is about “what would happen if traditional Old West enemies, cowboys and American Indians, found the prairie attacked by aliens in mid-1800s Arizona,” which is a question that’s vexed historians for decades.
I imagine tomorrow we’ll be reporting that it turns out Steven Spielberg is an android from the future. In the meantime, you can click here to watch the interview Steve did with Orci and Kurtman this past April.