As we reported earlier this year, Hasbro had a big deal set up at Universal where the studio was going to adapt a number of their games including Battleship, Ouija, and Candyland.
Battleship’s the only one that’s been made so far, and there’s been a lot of speculation on the ‘Net if it’s going to deliver or not, especially considering its mega budget.
A project based on the Ouija board also got shut down for budget concerns, it was getting over the $100 million range with director McG (Charlie’s Angels) at the helm, but reports have surfaced indicating Ouija’s now back up and running on a much smaller scale.
As Deadline tells us, the project is back at Universal, but instead of spending $100 million or more, the new incarnation of the story’s going to total no more than $5 million!
That’s definitely working on a much smaller canvas, but if they can pull it off, it’s a smart move to make. On a budget that small, there’s almost no way you could lose money, and like Orson Welles was fond of saying, the absence of limitations is the enemy of art. On a much smaller budget, you won’t have tons of expensive CGI to rely on, and you’re obviously going to have to be much more creative to make a scary movie.
Michael Bay, who is also moving in a smaller, low budget direction with his next film, Pain and Gain, is one of the producers on Ouija with his company Platinum Dunes, who also did remakes of Texas Chainsaw and The Amityville Horror.
Of course horror will continue to be a popular genre in Hollywood because you can make a movie on a low budget, they’re not hard movies to market, and you can be in the black with a film opening weekend.
Will Ouija help start a trend against Hollywood throwing hundreds of millions of dollars out the window? If the movie’s a hit, everyone in the biz will certainly want to try the same thing, and at the cost of $5 million, it should definitely make a few bucks in return.