Columbia Pictures is ready to roll the dice on The Da Vinci Code franchise one more time, announcing that it is officially moving forward with The Lost Symbol, which is based on author Dan Brown‘s book of the same name.
When The Da Vinci Code first came out, it was a mass hit and was everywhere you looked and listened. This popularity obviously carried over when director Ron Howard and star Tom Hanks teamed up for the movie adaptation, and though it wasn’t as well-received, the movie still made $758 million in its box office run. A sequel was always expected considering there were more books in the series, but for some reason it never felt quite right. Angels & Demons was even less-liked than the original, and it went on to make $486 million — not a bad take, but surely not up to the hopes of the studio.
Despite the lackluster performance of Angels & Demons, this news comes as no real shock. Yes the original made a lot more money, but it also made a profit of of over $300 million. You don’t need to have the best business sense in the world to think that another film could deliver similar numbers, even if it ultimately doesn’t fare well.
Whether Hanks will return to the role or not known for sure, but he is expected to. Howard and Brian Grazer of Imagine Entertainment will produce the movie, which means that a new director is likely. Steven Knight (Eastern Promises, Dirty Little Things) has been hired to write the script.
The Lost Symbol returns us to the witty Robert Langdon, and this time concentrates on Freemasonry. Langdon is invited to Washington D.C. to by his mentor — head of the Smithsonian Institution — to give a speech, but when he gets there only to discover his mentor’s hand and a clue, he quickly realizes that he will need is decryption skills to save his friend.
The novel was published in 2009 and was the latest Robert Langdon adventure penned by Brown. Angels & Demons was actually the first book in the series, being published in 2000, but Howard felt it would work better as a sequel due to the superiority of 2003’s Da Vinci Code.
I’ve only seen the first movie, but I did enjoy it and hope to read the books and check out these other films eventually. Being as how I’ve recently become acquainted with Mr. Da Vinci and he seems like a pretty good guy, it’s hard not to get into this crazy stuff (Assassin’s Creed II, anyone? Anyone?).