Copyright 2002

[ May 25th 2002 ]

Helmer Jan de Bont may not direct Paramount Pictures Tomb Raider sequel after all according to fresh rumours matriculating from Cannes. Although Par is satisfied with the screenplay tendered for the second Lara Croft movie, no official confirmation has been made on who will direct the returning Angelina Jolie.

With franchise fever consuming Hollywood fuelled by the recent releases of Spiderman and Resident Evil, Paramount Pictures wants to move quickly toward mounting a sequel to Lara Croft: Tomb Raider. Following the high-profile search for a director, Variety Magazine reported last week that the studio had set its sights on Speed helmer Jan De Bont.

The original Simon West-helmed video-game adaptation garnered more than $230 million in revenue worldwide, coining $48 million during its domestic opening weekend and remains the highest ever box-office earner for a female-driven movie. That married with 30 million unit sales of a video-game featuring the most successful female character in the history of the industry produces the perfect ingredients for a second indelible mark on the silver screen and the Paramount bankroll.

Haymarket Business Publications recently announced that Jan de Bont plans develop and direct a big-screen feature about fourth century Austrian warrior St. Nikolas for European financing and production entity Epsilon. Written by Ken Young and Dennis LeFevre, the project is described as a sweeping epic exploring Nikolas' experiences as a heroic warrior investigating a deadly mystery when he is assigned - in the wake of the Roman army's withdrawal - to restore order in a town plagued by corruption and violence.

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