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MARS movie may be out of Rodriguez's orbit

Development jeopardizes A PRINCESS OF MARS

By Patrick Sauriol     April 08, 2004
Source: FilmForce, Variety

Director Robert Rodriguez may be in danger of not directing A PRINCESS OF MARS, Paramount Pictures' big budget sci-fi actioner based on the Edgar Rice Burroughs classic novel. The story first broke last evening on IGN FilmForce where a longtime source told the website that the movie studio and the director have had a "falling out" due to Rodriguez resignation from the Directors Guild of America. The filmmaker recently resigned so he could share a co-director's credit with SIN CITY comic creator Frank Miller on the Miramax movie of the same name now filming. The Guild doesn't allow its members to share a credit on a film with a non-guild individual, which forced Rodriguez to resign so he could make the SIN CITY film with Miller.

The problem is that Paramount Pictures cannot hire someone to direct one of their films unless they are a member of the DGA -- which Rodriguez is now not.

FilmForce attempted to seek confirmation of denial of the rumor from Rodriguez's camp as well as Paramount and Alphaville Pictures, the MARS movie producing partner. After a time Rodriguez's publicist returned FilmForce's call and issued the following statement: "As of today, we are not dropping out. We are still very much making that movie."

The story took on a larger role when today's Variety hit the web. The trade magazine is also reporting that Rodriguez's resignation from the guild has now jeopardized the development of the film. Furthermore, Variety reports that the director has no intention of rejoining the Guild once work is complete on SIN CITY. There is a possibility, albeit a remote one, that the Guild may allow a concession and the way could be paved for Rodriguez to direct A PRINCESS OF MARS for Paramount. The studio remains hopeful that a solution can be found.


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