Tales From Development Hell

David Hughes’ Tales From Development Hell: The Greatest Movies Never Made is a fantastic book for movie fans. It gives you all of these ‘behind the scenes’ looks at the lengthy production process on some movies that were made, and details why some movies never were. Sometimes, in the case of a large franchise like Lord of the Rings, it’s both.

I learned a lot from this book. Like how Tim Burton’s Planet of the Apes ended up such a mess, why Sandman (an adaptation of the comic) has yet to be made, how Robert Redford’s demand of more screen time ruined a movie called ‘The Hot Zone’, and how Indiana Jones and The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull is almost solely George Lucas’ fault.
Hughes also writes about his personal experience as a seemingly STILL aspiring screenwriter. It sounds like a job you should only attempt if you’re in it for the love of writing, not the money.
The only things I didn’t like we’re the blurb on the cover about how great this book is from Variety, when they’re mentioned in it around a dozen times. And, maybe this is more of a personal issue, but when Hughes is referring to someone he sometimes will use their last name, then change to their first, so you have to remember a person’s entire name if it’s there, or run the risk of confusion later.
Tales From Development Hell really is a fantastic book and is a must read for anyone interested in the film production process or screenwriting in general.

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