Universal, Fox may be game for ‘Halo’

Don’t tell the Covenant, but the enigmatic “Halo” protagonist Master Chief may soon be arriving in theaters, thanks to a deal taking shape at Universal Pictures and 20th Century Fox. Microsoft had gone out with a draft of “Halo” penned by Alex Garland (“28 Days Later), but its slavish devotion to the software giant’s rigid story-and-character criteria met with a lukewarm, underwhelming response from DreamWorks, New Line, Warner Bros. and most other studios that read it. But Universal and Fox hung in and believe in the game franchise, which has grossed $600 million. People familiar with the talks say Universal is leading the way on a deal that would divide the pic’s cost on a 50/50 basis between Fox and Universal: The former would take international and the latter would handle domestic distribution.

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