One of Star Trek Into Darkness‘ writers, Damon Lindelof is one of the hottest screenwriters in Hollywood at the moment. Along with Into Darkness, Lindelof was the co-showrunner on the TV series Lost, the co-writer of Ridley Scott’s Prometheus, and the co-writer of the upcoming zombie war movie World War Z, starring Brad Pitt.
Lindelof was profiled in the recent issue of The Hollywood Reporter, where the 40-year-old writer talked about World War Z and J.J. Abrams‘ forthcoming Star Wars: Episode VII. During World War Z ‘s production issues last year, the film’s producer and star Brad Pitt called Lindelof to do a pass on the script’s final act. Pitt was a big fan of Lindelof’s work on Prometheus and thought the screenwriter could work wonders with World War Z. Lindelof says:
‘The idea of a large-scale, epic, $150 million zombie movie starring Brad Pitt sounds pretty good to me,’ he says. ‘Because I haven’t seen that before. I haven’t seen the go-for-broke, insane zombie movie. One of the things that Brad said was, there are so many tropes we’ve come to expect in zombie films, and he wanted to do something different. And the only way to do it different was to do it big.
The problems on World War Z were greater than expected, so Lindelof called in screenwriter Drew Goddard (The Cabin in the Woods) to help him with the movie’s ending. Paramount Pictures ultimately had to spend an additional $20 million to go back into production to re-shoot a new ending. Lindelof reveals:
“One of the things that I said when I first agreed to do it was, ‘Guys, we have to do this completely and totally under the table,'” Lindelof says. “I just got through the Prometheus experience, and ‘Lindelof comes in to fix the World War Z ending’ will bring, literally — it’ll be the worst press you can ever imagine. I guarantee that I will take all the blame if the movie doesn’t do well. That’s what I’m here for.”
As for Star Wars: Episode VII, Lindelof says he won’t work on the film’s screenplay, but has a close relationship with Abrams and will help out where he can.
“I consider both of us part of each other’s pitching cabinet,” says Lindelof. “We’re both there for each other, officially or otherwise, no matter what. I know for a fact that, moving forward, I will bend his ear on this.”
While Damon Lindelof has been a punching bag for “geek rage” (he was mainly blamed for the problems of Prometheus and Lost), he is taking all the criticism in stride and is fully aware of the entire Internet backlash against him. Let’s hope Lindelof can redeem himself with Star Trek Into Darkness and World War Z this summer.