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With the announcement that Dan Brown will be bringing his popular character Robert Langdon back for more riddle solving with his latest book Inferno, fans of the New York Times Best selling novelist may be curious to know when they'll see the movie adaptation of Brown's last novel The Lost Symbol. Reports say the script for the project is expected to be finished soon and pre-production should happen at some point this year, but Tom Hanks' schedule may be a factor.
Published in 2009, The Lost Symbol is Brown's third Robert Langdon book, following Angels & Demons (2000) and The Da Vinci Code (2003). Set in Washington, DC, the story has Harvard University symbologist on another riddle-solving mission, in search for clues related to the symbols of the Freemasons in an effort to save his kidnapped mentor.
The LA Times posted some updates on the status of the feature adaptation of the novel, including that Danny Strong, who penned the screenplay for HBO's Game Change (and was recently seen on stage just last weekend when the TV movie won a Golden Globe) is expected to turn in a draft of the script in the coming weeks. The filmmakers expect to start pre-production this year. Ron Howard directed The Da Vinci Code and Angels & Demons, but he won't be helming The Lost Symbol. As of 2011, Mark Romanek - who directed One Hour Photo and the Locke & Key pilot that Fox didn't order to series - is attached to direct The Lost Symbol and is reportedly waiting for the draft.
The Times goes on to say that Tom Hanks' schedule is another wild card in the equation. Hanks played Robert Langdon in the first two films and is expected to reprise the role for The Lost Symbol, but as you can imagine, he has a few other things on his plate. He just finished up playing Walt Disney in Saving Mr. Banks, the Disney film that tells the story of the making of Mary Poppins. And among his upcoming projects, Hanks is set to return to the work of the late Nora Ephron (Sleepless in Seattle, You've Got Mail), with a role in her play Lucky Guy, which is set to open on Broadway in April. So, hopefully when The Lost Symbol is ready to go, Hanks will be available.
As for a movie for Brown's next novel Inferno, Columbia hasn't seen the novel yet but "is hoping to shortly." Inferno is set to hit shelves this May. More information on Brown's new novel here.