Men In Black III was scheduled to resume production this week in New York, but Sony and the film's producers have announced they are pushing back the start date again. The production has already had nearly a two month hiatus, shooting is now delayed until March 28 because of ongoing script issues, according to a person close to the film.
The film can't catch a break. Filming was scheduled to start in October, but it was rumored to have been pushed back a month because of creative disagreements between Will Smith and filmmakers, which Sony denied. About a month later, producers announced they were breaking production of the film into two phases: the first part, set in the present, would begin in November and wrap before the holidays (it in fact did that), but the second part, set in 1969, would not begin shooting until mid-February.
Jeff Nathanson (Catch Me If You Can) was hired to brush up Ethan Cohen's (Tropic Thunder) draft of ths script.
The break did cause alarm, it is highly irregular for a production to take that long of a break. Producer Walter Parkes and a Sony spokesperson claimed seasonal concerns and tax incentives, not creative disagreements, were responsible for the break.
"We had to start shooting this year to take advantage of New York State tax incentives, but we also needed to be able to shoot certain exteriors in warmer weather. So back in July we had the idea to keep the start date but build in a hiatus so we could essentially extend the production to late spring.”
According to an insider, the current major hold up is because of the lack of a ready script made that impossible. Parkes and a Sony spokesman were not immediately available for comment. A Sony spokesman has confirmed that the May 2012 release date will not be afffected because of the delay.
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