Horror master Eli Roth nets deal to direct giant prehistoric shark thriller, Meg

Steven Alten's best-selling sci-fi novel, Meg: A Novel of Deep Terror, has been languishing in development hell for nearly 20 years, but with monster movie fans flocking to Jurassic World and holding viewing parties for Syfy's crazy Sharknado franchise, momentum has shifted toward landing this beastly fish onto the big screen. 

Now cult horror director Eli Roth (Cabin Fever, Hostel) has provided the missing link to hook Meg and swing it into production to capitalize on the current fervor for fantastic creatures (and prehistoric creatures, cough cough Jurassic World's $500 million opening weekend).  Alten's 1997 book and its subsequent sequels center around the heroic exploits of U.S. Navy deep sea diver Jonas Taylor and his attempts to destroy a 60-foot prehistoric Megalodon shark causing havoc off the California coast.  No casting announcements have been made, but Warner Bros. is banking on this becoming a tentpole project filmed from a screenplay by Dean Georgaris (Lara Croft: Tomb Raider - The Cradle of Life, Paycheck), so expect some stellar names to be mentioned.

Here's the official synopsis of the novel:

On a top-secret dive into the Pacific Ocean’s deepest canyon, Jonas Taylor found himself face-to-face with the largest and most ferocious predator in the history of the animal kingdom. The sole survivor of the mission, Taylor is haunted by what he’s sure he saw but still can’t prove exists – Carcharodon megalodon, the massive mother of the great white shark. The average prehistoric Meg weighs in at twenty tons and could tear apart a Tyrannosaurus rex in seconds.
Written off as a crackpot suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder, Taylor refuses to forget the depths that nearly cost him his life. With a Ph.D. in paleontology under his belt, Taylor spends years theorizing, lecturing, and writing about the possibility that Meg still feeds at the deepest levels of the sea. But it takes an old friend in need to get him to return to the water, and a hotshot female submarine pilot to dare him back into a high-tech miniature sub.
Diving deeper than he ever has before, Taylor will face terror like he’s never imagined, and what he finds could turn the tides bloody red until the end of time. MEG is about to surface. When she does, nothing and no one is going to be safe, and Jonas must face his greatest fear once again.

Though Meg's plot does tread in some familiar waters, do you think Roth is the right director to hook audiences with his intense, indie brand of terror?

(Via Bloody-Disgusting)

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