Turns out that $80 million budget was a sticking point after all! Shawn Levy’s Frankenstein no longer has the whole “Shawn Levy” component to contend with. Fox decided (sensibly) that their tale penned by Chronicle‘s Max Landis, would be better served going a more economic route. Enter new director Paul McGuigan (Lucky Number Slevin).
Per Variety, “Levy wanted a big-budget version of the classic monster tale, according to sources close to the project, while Fox wants to keep costs on the project down.”
Earlier this year, the now departed Levy explained how they’re going to create the monster, while also teasing multiple Franks, “In the case of ‘Frankenstein,’ my whole approach is based on a mo-cap SimulCam playback so that it’s not a dude with scars on his face. It’s not just kind of latex and a costume; it would be a motion-capture performance of the monster—I can give away maybe not too much by saying there’s more than one in our version—and then I would go to Europe, shoot the movie, do scenes with the real actors and I would be able to see the motion-captured monster in real time due to SimulCam, so yes that is our technological VFX paradigm for Frankenstein.”
No word on if those Levy plans have changed. A smaller budget would indicate that they might. If so, I imagine Landis (or whomever) is doing a rewrite as we speak.