4. The Fighter 2

ChristianBaleFighter

Here’s another project that never seemed legitimate even though Mark Wahlberg talked it up. Wahlberg! We trusted you. At least the Entourage movie seems to be heading our way, eh? Eh.

Admittedly, it would have been a bit odd to see a continuation of the Mickey Ward story, but with this real-life tale there’s a natural next chapter: his legendary fights with Arturo Gatti. The crowning glory after the hellish family drama of the first outing.

Months after mentioning it in passing, Wahlberg reiterated that he was serious about making it happen, but that’s as serious as it got.

3. Henry Selick’s The Shadow King

Henry Selick

Cross your long fingers that K5 International (or someone) is getting this done. The stop-motion project from, who else, Henry Selick focuses on a young boy with an unusual talent for making shadows that battle a group of monsters coming after New York City.

It’s another thrilling adventure in concept, and Selick has earned a ton of trust, but it’s had trouble launching. Laika passed on it and, even though Selick has a contract with them, Disney didn’t move forward with it. K5 International took the movie to the European Film Market in 2013, but everything is silent a year later. Hopefully that means Selick is busy moving dolls a fraction of an inch at a time, but he’s just signed on for A Tale Dark and Grimm, so this one’s status is uncertain.

2. Will Smith as a Modern Day Job

Will Smith Fights Tears

With the slew of Biblical epics about to land, Joe might be resurrected like Lazarus. Another 2011 announcement (and appropriately one from the screenwriters of the sequel-less The Fighter), Smith was set to play the character with a modernized name (so it wouldn’t be confused with jObs?) who undergoes a great deal of torment from God and the Devil. This — like a million other projects Smith has been attached to — never got made. Such is the contractual reality of the continent-sized star.

1. Ghostbusters 3

ghostbusters original vision

The heavyweight title holder when it comes to recent, unfulfilled promises. This one has been so overwrought, so overblown in the media, and so over-talked by one of its potential stars that we placed a ban on related news items back in — you guessed it — 2011. We’ve avoided rumors and rehashed overtures from Dan Aykroyd for three years, and it still feels sweet.

It also feels sweet that Ashton Kutcher never got cast. He would have made a terrible Slimer.

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