It has never been more popular to adapt novels and books into movies, though the phenomenon is not a new one. But sometimes the process becomes impossible, especially when there is opposition from otherworldly forces.
We've heard about weird instances of bad luck attaching itself to certain projects, like the tragedies that happened on set with The Exorcist, or the superstition around saying the name of the main character in Shakespeare's Macbeth.
But for the filming of John Kennedy Toole's A Confederacy of Dunces, it appears more than probable accidents. It almost seems that an invisible force is preventing it from ever being made...
It began in 1980 when producers started looking for an A-list actor to play the eccentric and cumbersome protagonist Ignatius J. Reilly. Their top choice was John Belushi, who was excited to play the role, a favorite character of his.
Two days before he was due to meet with the film executives, Belushi died of a drug overdose. The tragedy rocked the industry, but after their grieving, the producers began reaching out to other leads.
That's when things started getting weird...
After the loss of Belushi, the film team approached their next choice with the role. John Candy was the next on the list, and though he was the sweetheart type, they knew his capabilities would bring out a zaniness without losing control too much.
Candy died of a fatal heart attack during the shooting of a movie in Mexico. This was not completely unforeseen, as the late actor had been struggling with health problems due to his weight for some years.
They kept searching. Chris Farley had a lot more energy than the others to bring to the table, and they felt he would do the New Orleans vigilante's personality justice. Farley died of an overdose after consuming too much cocaine and morphine following an extreme binge. Belushi and Farley both died at 33.
With many of Hollywood's overweight funnymen now dead, the movie producers decided to go a different route. They passed the role to Harris "Divine" Milstead, a drag queen with more than enough personality.
Unfortunately, just not enough time. Divine died in his sleep from natural causes.
Just as the film studio was beginning to lose hope for the project, Hurricane Katrina devastated the city of New Orleans, making filming impossible for years.
Will the movie ever be made? Perhaps, right now comedian Zach Galifianakis or actor Nick Offerman are slated as the possible successors. But will they live to see the day?