Peter Jackson's ‘The Lovely Bones’ to Cost Someone $65 Million?

Peter Jackson and his next movie. Photo: Getty Images (left), Courtesy of Little, Brown (right)

The Hollywood tracking boards were abuzz this afternoon with rumors that DreamWorks was buying Peter Jackson's screenplay for The Lovely Bones. (Jackson's shopping the screenplay around to every studio in Hollywood — except for New Line, of course, since he recently sued them for profits he says he's owed on the Lord of the Rings trilogy.) The plot thickened when an assistant to Jackson's manager, Ken Kamins, weighed in on the tracking boards claiming that the script was not yet sold and that they were "entertaining multiple offers."

We're hearing that the jaw-dropper amid all this chatter is the claim that Jackson's projected budget for the film is $65 million, not counting Jackson's (presumably substantial) directing and producing fees. That's $65 million to make a movie narrated from beyond the grave by a raped and murdered teenager. We recognize that Alice Sebold's book was a best-seller, and Peter Jackson is a super-genius, but does this seem excessive to anyone else?

Update: So How's the Script?