Hanks and Howard Back Together for Dan Brown’s ‘Inferno’

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Dan Brown Inferno movieIt was confirmed last night by Deadline that Tom Hanks and Ron Howard are bringing back Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon for a third time after The Da Vinci Code and Angels & Demons as Inferno, based on the Dan Brown novel, will head into production in April 2015.

Worldwide the first two films brought in $1.24 billion worldwide with only 28% of that total coming from the domestic box office, which is to say this has a big overseas following despite the fact reviews for the first two movies were never stellar.

As for this next installment, which skips over The Lost Symbol when it comes to the chronological release of the books’ publication dates, here’s the synopsis:

In the heart of Italy, Harvard professor of symbology, Robert Langdon (Hanks), is drawn into a harrowing world centered on one of history’s most enduring and mysterious literary masterpieces… Dante’s Inferno.

Against this backdrop, Langdon battles a chilling adversary and grapples with an ingenious riddle that pulls him into a landscape of classic art, secret passageways, and futuristic science. Drawing from Dante’s dark epic poem, Langdon races to find answers and decide whom to trust… before the world is irrevocably altered.

I’ll admit to thinking the idea of bringing to light mysteries of the real world to life in such a fashion is intriguing, but the movies have been so poorly constructed I had a hard time enjoying either of the first two. The Nicolas Cage-led National Treasure franchise works in a similar fashion, but at least that one doesn’t take itself so seriously, allowing for a little more enjoyment in that “guilty pleasure” sort of way.

David Koepp (Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit, Premium Rush) is writing the screenplay, which doesn’t help matter much either unless they can somehow find a way to get Michael Shannon to play another batshit crazy villain. If that were the case this would immediately make it on my list of most anticipated movies.

As far as when we’ll see it, the originally planned release date was December 18, 2015, but I’m not sure Howard can turn the film around that quickly. Perhaps a March 2016 release is in order?