Although Disney’s John Carter landed with a thud in 2012, Edgar Rights Burroughs Inc. is convinced the fantasy adventure still has a future in film.
The company, which oversees the library of the late author, announced it has regained the film rights from Disney, and plans to find another studio to adapt the pulp classic.
“John Carter of Mars was the creative stimulus behind such movie classics as Superman, Star Wars and Avatar,” ERB Inc. President James Sullos said in a statement. “We will be seeking a new partner to help develop new adventures on film as chronicled in the eleven Mars novels Burroughs wrote. This adventure never stops. Along with a new Tarzan film in development by Warner Bros., we hope to have John Carter of Mars become another major franchise to entertain world-wide audiences of all ages.”
Based on A Princess of Mars, the first novel in Burroughs’ Barsoom series, John Carter grossed $284 million worldwide on a $250 million budget (with another $100 million for marketing), a failure that contributed to the resignation — or, perhaps, firing — of Rich Ross as chairman of Walt Disney Studios. Disney reported an expected $200 million loss on the film, placing John Carter among history’s great box-office flops alongside Disney’s Mars Needs Moms, Warner Bros.’ Speed Racer and Columbia’s infamous Ishtar.
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