As if a third-place opening wasn't bad enough for Speed Racer producer Joel Silver, Page Six today added a liberal dose of existential crisis to the mix when it reported Silver may have flopped for Warner Bros. for the last time. "For the past few months, he's been trying to get his deal extended, but the thinking at Warner is maybe just let his contract run out," its source says — but wait! Silver himself told Nikki Finke yesterday that he's sought no such extension! But his contract still isn't being renewed! We're so confused — help us, Joel!
"My deal has a year and a half to go. I won't renew it until the deal is up. And my Dark Castle deal has 16 movies released through Warner Bros which are independently funded, and which we have all the money for. And the first one is the Guy Ritchie movie, RocknRolla, which will be in October." ...
"Everyone is disturbed about this. I know there's a long list of Hollywood types right now kinda elated about that. But Warner Bros is my family, I've been there for 22 years, and we're fine. But I can't stop the slings and arrows of the world around me."
Schadenfreude aside, a year and a half is a long time, so please forgive us, Nikki, for playing this one by ear anyway. That said, we tend to think Silver's fairly untouchable even after a succession of bombs at a studio where it's open season on upper management. Nevertheless,anything's possible — especially with a Guy Ritchie movie standing between now and then. Be afraid.