Deadline is reporting that Utopia, one of two troubled shows that director David Fincher was developing for HBO, is dead in its current incarnation, with the show’s cast having been released from their contracts. The series, a new collaboration between Fincher and Gone Girl author Gillian Flynn, was rumored to be in trouble last month, due to Fincher and the network being unable to reach an agreement about its budget.
According to the reports, Fincher had already begun rehearsing for the new series—an adaptation of a British show about a graphic novel that can predict the future—with his cast, which included Colm Feore, Eric McCormack, Dallas Roberts, Jason Ritter, Brandon Scott, Agyness Deyn, and his Girl With The Dragon Tattoo star, Rooney Mara. Those performers have now been released from their contracts, so that whomever HBO finds to take Utopia over—the network owns the rights to the project, not Fincher—can make his or her own casting decisions if the series ends up going forward.
Meanwhile, the director and producer’s other HBO series, the music video comedy Videosynchrazy, stopped production back in June. On the bright side—never far away when discussing the light, breezy worlds that populate the mind of David Fincher—it was implied at the Television Critics Association’s Press Tour that the director’s focus on Utopia was the primary reason the Entourage-vein-y series was in peril. So it’s possible everything will work out just fine for Videosynchrazy, now that its creator is no longer being distracted by the show he was clearly way more invested in making, which may or may not end up in someone else’s hands.