Mark Romanek the Frontrunner to Direct Adaptation of Dan Brown’s THE LOST SYMBOL

     October 19, 2011

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I don’t know if this news should make me excited or sad.  Deadline reports that talented director Mark Romanek (Never Let Me Go) is the frontrunner to helm the adaptation of Dan Brown’s latest Robert Langdon novel The Lost Symbol.  Ron Howard directed the prior Langdon books The Da Vinci Code and Angels & Demons.  Both movies took themselves far too seriously and also suffered from being based on awful books.  I haven’t picked up The Lost Symbol because I don’t really care what exposition machine and master of trivial history Robert Langdon has to spew for 528 pages.

Hit the jump for more on the film along with a synopsis.

the_lost_symbol_book_coverThe movie is a high priority for Sony and would be Romanek’s first blockbuster feature.  He passed on The Wolverine, and in 2008 he almost took on The Wolfman but dropped out shortly before production began because of a budget dispute with Universal.*  The Lost Symbol is almost a sure-fire hit and would likely give Romanek some clout for his follow-up project.  Additionally, his skills may be able to elevate the movie above Howard’s slavish and uninspired adaptations of the previous Robert Langdon novels.  Unfortunately, Brown is one of the screenwriters (the other is Eastern Promises scribe Steven Knight), and I don’t know if any director could improve the material.

Hanks is likely to reprise his role as Langdon but no deals have been signed.  He’s currently at work on Paul Greengrass’ adaptation of the real-life Somali pirate drama A Captain’s Duty (aka Maersk Alabama).  He’ll next be seen in theaters in Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close.

Here’s the synopsis of Dan Brown’s The Lost Symbol:

In this stunning follow-up to the global phenomenon The Da Vinci Code, Dan Brown demonstrates once again why he is the world’s most popular thriller writer. The Lost Symbol is a masterstroke of storytelling that finds famed symbologist Robert Langdon in a deadly race through a real-world labyrinth of codes, secrets, and unseen truths . . . all under the watchful eye of Brown’s most terrifying villain to date. Set within the hidden chambers, tunnels, and temples of Washington, D.C., The Lost Symbol is an intelligent, lightning-paced story with surprises at every turn.  This is Dan Brown’s most exciting novel yet.

*Universal reportedly ended up paying more to replace him and make up lost time than if they had just agreed to his budget increase in the first place.

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