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Development Hell

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/D3_poster_5519.PNG
Aagh, the anticipation is killing me!note 

The state wherein an announced creative project becomes stuck at the preparation stage for years.

The term originates in the film industry, referring to films mired in pre-production without casting or production ever beginning. A common occurrence with book adaptations and other licensed materials, as legal squabbles over rights, Executive Meddling, budgetary problems, and differing artistic visions keep the project from going before the cameras. And even if it does make it to the shooting stage, a Troubled Production can easily derail it and throw it right back here.

Films stuck in Development Hell are called Vaporfilm. The Video Game equivalent of this is Vaporware.

Development Hell becomes a sort of self-reinforcing feedback loop over time — as one director gets fed up and quits, the project is assigned to a new director, who orders a new screenplay with a new vision, which results in producers demanding changes, wash, rinse, repeat etc. Projects in other media can sink into similar cesspits. Sometimes examples of this trope lead into cases of What Could Have Been or Trailer Delay.

The Shelf of Movie Languishment is a variation where a finished work gets stuck in release limbo.

Compare to Extremely Lengthy Creation, where a work did take a long time to come to fruition, but with no problems involved.

For those examples which finally became real, after years, or decades in some cases, look at Saved from Development Hell.

The Other Wiki has an entry about Development Hell, with a list of films that are either in Development Hell or once were.

Examples with their own page:

Other examples:

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    Anime & Manga 
  • An anime adaptation of Tonari no 801-chan was originally supposed to be animated by Kyoto Animation, and even had a preliminary website up for it. Then something happened and it fell into limbo. The project was ultimately cancelled, though a 90-second animated OP was created by A-1 Pictures and bundled with Vol.4 of the web manga.
  • The planned Spiritual Successor to the Royal Space Force: The Wings of Honnêamise, Aoki Uru, entered preproduction in 1988, but hasn't been completely abandoned yet. Despite it being shelved indefinitely, Studio Gainax is still wishing to eventually produce it, and Yoshiyuki Sadamoto still releases the concept arts from time to time.
  • Lost Universe, which had only one season, fraught with Troubled Production; a second season was due to follow, but because of a financial pitfall occurring through animation studios at the time, it was held off in favor of more Slayers media, and may be still.
  • A stall can be typical of all English manga distributors, especially for less common titles, but the Yaoi distributor Drama Queen seems to have either gone on a dragging hiatus since 2007, or is dead and no one can figure out where it's been buried, so to speak.
  • Kingdom Hearts II: The manga adaptation is stalled in Japan, but Word has it they plan to go back to it after the manga of 358/2 Days finishes.) The U.S. release WAS stalled due to Tokyopop's losing the license to the series but has, as of 2013, been Saved from Development Hell.
  • The U.S. release of Shonan Junai Gumi is similarly stalled.
  • The Five Killers was supposed to be an original creation from writer/producer Eric Calderon as an animated TV series (12 episodes with a 1 hour finale) done by GONZO. A trailer is unfortunately all that came out due to GONZO's financial situation.
  • An Appleseed television series titled "Appleseed: Genesis" was first announced in 2005 and languished in Development Hell until it was officially canceled in 2008, resulting in several lawsuits. A new (possibly a replacement or even a Retool) series titled "Appleseed XIII" was released in 2011 and dubbed into English in 2013.
  • After Gundam SEED Destiny ended, it was announced that there would be a movie sequel which would be the Grand Finale for the Cosmic Era timeline. However, the film's head writer Chiaki Morosawa underwent a hysterectomy to treat her uterine fibroids and an ovarian cyst (according to her April 2008 interview with Animage magazine, in which she explained the delays behind the movie), so literally no progress has been made on the film since 2005. With Morosawa's death in February 2016, it appears that the movie is currently on indefinite hold, if not cancelled outright.
  • Despera's production is currently on hold due to the director Ryutaro Nakamura's health issues and his untimely death.
  • We might have found out what happens after GaoGaiGar FINAL if not for the fact that Project Z ceased to be. Though a net novel based on Project Z has been confirmed.
  • After the release of its third movie, the credits listed the release of a third Tenchi Muyo! OAV series. Took about five years and a series that took place a year after it to do so. This is pretty normal for the franchise, because its creator, Masaki Kajishima, is essentially a free agent and always seeks to obtain funding without relinquishing the rights and the creative control, which is quite difficult.
    • And let's not forget the fact that the English release of said 3rd OAV series' 2nd and 3rd volumes languished for a year due to the fact that Funimation screwed up on its contract.
  • The Dream Machine the last film by Satoshi Kon was back on track for a short while but recently financial difficulty has put the film off indefinitely.
  • The English version of Heroman falls into this category thanks in part to a lack of cooperation between Studio BONES and Disney. The deal with Crunchyroll to get it streamed to English speaking territories was rushed in at the last minute.
  • Hunter × Hunter: Due to the writer, Yoshihiro Togashi, being extremely ill in real-lifenote , the manga goes on hiatus for long periods of time. The Chimera Ant arc took roughly seven years to complete because of this.
  • The D.Gray-Man manga suffers a similar problem to Hunter × Hunter where its manga creator, Katsura Hoshino, was involved in a car accident in real-life which gravely injured her writing hand. To help endure the pain, the D.Gray-Man manga was later switched from weekly to monthy releases, but even then, she has a rough time turning the work in monthly.
  • NANA has been in this since the summer of 2009, due to Ai Yazawa's serious illness and hospitalization. While she was released from the hospital in April 2010 and a special chapter/spin-off was made in 2013 for the 100th issue of Cookie magazine, as of December 2014 the main series is still on hold.
  • Neppu Kairiku Bushi Road was first announced in 2003 and was to be released in 2005. Then various complications happened (e.g. the staff members all left). It was later announced to become a 3-hour special on New Years Eve of 2013. That's 10 YEARS it's been stuck.
  • The first season of Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt, which aired in 2010, had a typical Gainax Ending plus Sequel Hook. Despite Studio Gainax releasing promotional images for season 2, it was cancelled due to most of the show's staff (director Hiroyuki Imaishi) leaving to form Studio Trigger. Gainax has however teased in late 2016 that they may have something new for the show in the works after all... Sadly, it turned out to be merely a temporary themed café and a bunch of merchandising items.
  • In July 2011, an anime adaptation of the light novel Savanna Game was announced, planned to air in 2012. There has been no word on it since. It has gotten to the point that some people believe there was never going to be an anime and that the announcement was just shameless advertising for the novel.
  • A sequel to Bubblegum Crisis Tokyo 2040 entitled Tokyo 2041 was announced almost a decade ago to be in the early stages of production, with ADV Films, the US distributor of Tokyo 2040, backing the project. ADV later said that they were waiting on the staff from the original series to become available before they could proceed. We haven't heard any updates since, and with the downfall of ADV Films, and the rights to Tokyo 2040 now belonging to Funimation, it's safe to say the project is canceled.
  • A sequel film to Ninja Scroll was announced in 2005, but nothing new has come about since.
  • Back when t.A.T.u. were at the height of their popularity, an anime starring their animated counterparts called t.A.T.u. Paragate was in the planning stages. According to what remains of the official site (Wayback Archive link) it was supposed to come out in Winter 2004. Nothing more is known about it, since when the girls cut ties with their manager (the same guy who decided about adding a lesbian subtext to their performance) the project ground to a halt. The opening animation was to be directed by none other than Shinichiro Watanabe, but there's no evidence about it, and it's possible that nothing other than a title and a vague hint of plot was ever put together for this failed project.
  • In 2012 Madhouse announced they were animating a short based on Peanuts but as of 2016 more info has yet to be released.
  • The 2nd season of the adaptation of Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha ViVid, along with an interquel movie that takes place between A's and StrikerS seems to be stuck on limbo after the 1st season for ViVid was poorly received to the point that the BD/DVD for the 1st season seems to have gone into development hell as well.
    • This seems to be averted with the announcement of spin-off anime ViViD Strike!
  • Rebuild of Evangelion is certainly taking its sweet time. The quadrilogy of films was supposed to be completed in 2009; it's 2016 at the time of this writing and there's still not even the slightest hint on Evangelion 4.0. Sure, there was the trailer at the end of 3.0, but given that the trailer for 3.0 at the end of the previous film ended up totally unrelated to the actual film's contents, it might as well not even exist. It's assumed that Hideaki Anno was just busy directing Shin Godzilla, but that film has been released, and the fourth Rebuild movie is still stuck in hell. In July of 2016, Anno apologized and insisted he had gotten back to working on it, and the film series' aniimation director stated in November of that year that the film's production was in progress.
  • Chronic with the Robotech franchise:
    • Robotech II: The Sentinels was Harmony Gold's attempt to continue the series through original animation once more episodes were ordered. The scripts for all 65 episodes were written, and production began. However, after Matchbox pulled out its sponsorship deal due to the falling Japanese exchange rate, Harmony Gold could no longer afford to continue on with the project. The completed animation was later edited together into a Direct-to-Video movie that ends on a cliffhanger. The remaining scripts were later adapted into novels and comic books.
    • Robotech: The Odyssey was supposed to follow The Sentinels, but the cancellation of that project resulted in this one never entering production. Some of its ideas were incorporated into novels though. Fourth and fifth sequels in the series were also whispered about, but never went past the rumor stage.
    • Robotech 3000 was Harmony Gold's attempt to continue the series in CGI. The project stalled following poor fan reception at a screening of the trailer in 2000. Then the animation production company went under. There was talk of reviving the project through traditional animation, but it was later canceled.
    • Robotech: Mars Force was revealed in 2004 by writer Greg Weisman, who confirmed that the series would be more children-focused. No updates have been confirmed since 2006.
    • Robotech: Shadow Rising was the planned sequel to Robotech: The Shadow Chronicles (the only other animated sequel to the original series to actually result in a released project). It was announced in 2007 with a tentative release date of 2009. The film entered hell with Funimation pulled out as a production partner. However, Harmony Gold still insists that the project is not dead.
    • Robotech Academy was announced in 2014 when Harmony Gold launched a Kickstarter to raise half-a-million dollars to produce a 24-minute pilot episode. When the project was only able to raise about $200k, the campaign was canceled, though Harmony Gold is still reportedly shopping the project to developers.
    • The long-mooted Hollywood movie adaptation has its own entry in the Live-Action Film section.
  • Mirai Arise, an original anime by Sunrise, was announced in 2015 with a release date sometime in 2016, but for unknown reasons, no news has been heard of ever since.
  • An anime adaptation of the manga Alive: The Final Evolution was announced in 2008, however the project was canceled in 2010 due to GONZO's financial troubles.
  • Back in September 2016, there was an announcement on a basketball sports anime called Barangay 143 which would be set in the Philippines and would be produced by TV Asahi and the Philippine-based studio Synergy 88. Initially, it was supposed to be released on Spring 2017; however, the project is delayed due to lack of manpower. A a mobile video game app was released instead which is sort of a prologue to the upcoming anime. However, the anime has no definite release date as of this writing.
  • The increasingly-theoretical sequel to Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Movie: Rebellion. The original series came out in 2011, and Rebellion in 2013. It's a Cash Cow Franchise, so another anime installment seems inevitable; but as of mid-2017, nothing of substance has materialized other than a cryptic "concept movie" trailer released in 2015 (and a whole lot of spinoff manga and video games). The original screenwriter has expressed disinterest in working on another Madoka project, and it's unclear whether Studio Shaft ever decided on a replacement.

    Automobiles 
  • Monica, a French luxury automobile brand, created 22 prototypes, of which 8 went into production before work was stopped indefinitely. Read more here. It was a sign of What Could Have Been. Here's a photo.
  • General Motors planned to turn Saturn into Opel of America, with more vehicles added to the product line, when the 2007-2009 global economic crisis struck. The name then disappeared as 2009 ended and 2010 started. The Saturn division itself was first announced and a prototype shown in 1983. It was 1991 by the time you could actually buy one, and the original sedan's wraparound rear window had been stolen internally by Oldsmobile, leading observers to see the Saturn as the "copy".
  • Due in large part (but not entirely) to World War II, the VW Beetle design was finalized for production in 1938 but the first cars delivered to retail customers weren't until 1947.
  • Fiat has been teasing the return of their Alfa Romeo brand to the United States since about 2003. Now Alfa is back in North America with the 4C, a small mid engine sports car, and the Giulia, a luxury sport sedan. What other models will come to North America remains to be seen.
  • Mercedes-Benz T80 is a Stupid Jetpack Hitler example back in 1930s when aerodynamics were primitive. With an aircraft-like design and even an aircraft engine, the car boasts futuristic and aerodynamic performance which could not be seen for next decades. It was supposed to run by Hans Stucknote  on a special stretch of Autobahn, but the project was halted due to World War II. The bodyshell was saved, however, and there were never any run attempts afterwards. Many people over the decades have urged Mercedes-Benz to fully restore the T80 and test run it to see if it would have reached the ridiculously high speed record.

    Buildings 
  • The Oakland Athletics have been trying get a new home at least since the 1996 renovations to the Coliseum to bring the NFL's Raiders back turned one of the most picturesque stadiums into one of the ugliest. A plan to build a ballpark for them in San Jose has stalled since its announcement in 2009; as of 2013, a new plan to keep the team in Oakland's city limits with a waterfront ballpark near Jack London Square has emerged.
  • The NFL's Rams and Raiders both moved out of L.A. in 1994, citing the lack of a modern stadium as a major factor. Various groups had been trying to get a plan approved ever since, but neither plan managed to win both the needed city council approval and necessary financial backing. Despite several deadline extensions from the NFL, this lack of a concrete plan caused the league to bypass them for an expansion team in 2000, awarding it to fellow ex-NFL city, Houston. The fact that neither the city nor investors would commit to such an expensive project without a definite occupant and no NFL team was willing to make the move without a stadium plan in place had meant two decades (and counting) without the NFL in Los Angeles. Then, in 2016, following a disastrous tenure with their then-venue in St. Louis, the Rams decided to return to L.A.
  • The Ballpark Village shopping/entertainment/apartment complex in downtown St. Louis, designed to revitalize the area. Building began in 2005 with a planned completion date of July 2009. Around 2008, building stopped as financier Bill DeWitt refused to spend any more money on the project (and he is a multi-billionaire who makes a lot of money off of the St. Louis Cardinals, so his penny-pinching is completely inexcusable). It's finally completing its first stage of development (which includes Wrigley-like "rooftops") by the time the 2014 season starts.
  • When the Texas Rangers' new Ballpark in Arlington opened in 1994, it was supposed to be part of an expanded entertainment district that included, of all things, an amphitheater just to the northwest of the park. When Tom Hicks bought the club four years later, he promised an entire "Rangers Village" of condos and restaurants surrounding the area. As of 2014, the hill that was to contain the amphitheater has been paved down for a parking lot, the first set of condos built further to the northwest remain only half completed (largely due to Hicks declaring bankruptcy, which forced him to sell the team in 2010), most of the restaurants that have opened over the time closed down in just a couple years (including the one built into the ballpark), and many homes to the southwest were seized and torn down by the city to build the new Cowboys stadium. And now, in 2016, the city of Arlington announced a plan to build a whole new ballpark by 2021 (about 3-4 years before the lease on the current park expires) to quell the grumbling among some fans and media about the current park not having a roof to counter the extreme North Texas heat (despite the Rangers' AL pennants in 2010-11 and drawing 3 million attendance in 2012 and 2013 negating the argument that the heat prevents the team from winning and drawing fans).
  • Cologne Cathedral in Germany had the same development hell treatment during the time it was constructed. Construction started during the Middle Ages, halted construction during the 16th century, resumed during the 19th century, and finally completed in 1880. This is fairly common in medieval churches and cathedrals. The grander ones, even in the best case scenario, couldn't be completed in one generation. Under less than ideal conditions, many had construction that dragged on for decades or centuries as they repeatedly ran out of money and had to raise more. As a result, different sections are built according to the architectural styles of different eras, or are asymmetrical because they couldn't afford to build something again on the other side.
    • Ironically today there is (again) construction going on as acid rain and the sheer ages of some parts of the building have left their marks. A saying in Cologne allegedly goes "Wenn der Dom fertig ist geht die Welt unter" (once the cathedral is finally done, the End of the World as We Know It happens)
  • The Sagrada Familia in Barcelona, Spain, which began construction in the early 1880s under the direction of the architect Antoni Gaudí. Thanks in large part to Gaudí's death and the Spanish Civil War (and in large part to the incredible complexity of Gaudí's design), the construction for the cathedral has dragged on for decades. It is not scheduled to be completed until 2026, the centennial of Gaudí's death.
  • The Milan Cathedral began its construction in 1386 and its final touches were done in 1965.
  • The Episcopal Cathedral of St John The Divine in New York City is one of the largest churches in the world, and has never been finished since construction started in 1892.
  • Scientology's Flag Building, a.k.a. the "Super Power Building", in Clearwater, Florida, which was announced in 1993, broke ground in 1998, and subsequently put off its completion date for eleven years. And even after the building supposedly became ready for occupancy in 2010, it sat empty for another three years. Then, after the grand opening was scheduled for October 2013, Scientology announced in mid-September that the event would be held up "indefinately" over a dispute with the city over permits for the ceremony. The building finally opened on November 17, 2013.
  • The Mall at Oyster Bay was first planned to open in 1997 in Syosset, New York. The land was finally sold in 2014.
  • Great Mall of Las Vegas in, well, Las Vegas. Proposed in the 2000s as an outdoor mall featuring Macy's, Dillard's, a movie theater and condominiums. The property went into default in 2009.
  • Shops at East Prairie in Ames, Iowa. Proposed in 2002, canceled in 2011 when the land was sold.
  • A small outdoor mall in suburban Flint, Michigan called Trillium Circle was first proposed in 2004. Things first hit the skids when an existing grocery store decided to close instead of relocate into the mall. A theater opened on the site in 2006, but the economic decline and poor anchor choices (it would've had a Circuit City, but they went out of business) ground development to a halt, with only a Buffalo Wild Wings and a bank being built on outparcels. The developers have since sold off the land.
  • Bridges at Mint Hill, a proposed mall in Mint Hill, North Carolina. Originally slated for a 2007 opening, it quickly became a Troubled Production due to many factors — declining economy, protection of an endangered species of mussel, and the bankruptcy of the developer (General Growth Properties). Another developer finally bought the property in 2012 and revived the plans, but nothing else has been done since.
  • Glacier Town Center in Kalispell, Montana (which would consist of both a mall and a planned community) was first proposed in 2002. The developers were given a one-year extension in 2010, but since then, nothing has happened.
  • And going the other way, the Dixie Square Mall in Harvey, Illinois closed in 1978. A portion was briefly used as temporary school space, and one wing was fitted with fake storefronts for the famous "car chase through the mall" scene in The Blues Brothers, but the structure just sat unused otherwise, at the mercy of vandals and weather. The first redevelopment plans were announced in 1997, but redevelopment of the long-vacant building did not begin until 2005, when it was announced that a kitchen supply company wanted to open in one of the former anchor stores. The plans were later changed to demolish the building for a new retail center, but all development was halted when it was realized that the mall was loaded with asbestos, and the company that started demolition did not have a permit (that particular store that would have housed the kitchen supply store, a former Montgomery Ward, was essentially damaged beyond repair when the company illegally — due to the asbestos problem not being solved — tore down the central power plant on Christmas Eve before the mayor saw it and stopped them). Another company announced plans to build a new retail center on the site in 2010, but nothing happened until mid-2012, when the land was finally cleared.
  • American Dream Meadowlands, originally Xanadu Meadowlands, was designed as not just a mall, but a full lifestyle center complete with an indoor ski slope, ice rink, amusement park, live theater, and other attractions. It has been in development since 2003. The opening of the mall, located near Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey, has been pushed back several times due to various companies going bankrupt (two companies behind the construction of the mall, plus Borders, Circuit City, and Sports Authority, which were all originally slated as anchor stores) and stores pulling out because of the delays. It also didn't help that the mall was originally, as New Jersey's former Acting Governor Richard Codey said, "yucky looking." American Dream has been at least 80 percent complete since 2009, when it was also 70 percent leased. In 2011, the indoor ski slope collapsed under record breaking snowfall, delaying the opening of the mall even further until at least 2017.
  • Since 2007, Lockport Mall in the Buffalo, New York suburb of Lockport has been slated to be demolished and replaced with a Walmart. While the mall was successfully torn down (except for one department store which remains in operation), the Walmart construction has been repeatedly been held back due to seagulls nesting on the site. The Walmart finally opened in 2015.
  • Renovations for Madison Square Garden were set to get underway in 2010, but it was pushed back a year, with the renovation taking place in three stages over the summers of 2011, 2012, and 2013. To stall for even more time, the New York Rangers were sent on an extended road trip, after which they were finally welcomed home at the end of October.
  • The Sydney Opera House, which was built between 1959 and 1973. It ended up 10 years behind schedule and 14 times over budget, due to the complexity of the architecture and manufacture of the steel beams. On top of that, the architect, Jorn Utzon, quit in disgust.
  • The Olympic Stadium in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. It was begun as the central venue for the 1976 Summer Olympics. It was finally completed in 1987 with the installation of the retractable roof (which had remained in storage in France until 1982). At this point, it was discovered that the roof was not correctly designed and tore easily in use. It was removed in early 1998, and in the later part of the year replaced with a different, fixed roof...which failed dramatically during the first winter, causing the annual auto show that was being set up at the time to permanently change venues. In 2004, a contract was awarded for a new, permanent steel roof. In September of that same year, the stadium lost its biggest tenant when the Montreal Expos baseball team (which had already been splitting time between Montreal and San Juan, Puerto Rico for home games for two years) moved to Washington D.C. In 2009, the local fire department warned that without substantial repairs, including a new roof (still not installed) the stadium might be ordered closed. In 2011, approval for the new roof contract was sought.
  • The second El Rancho Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas originally opened in 1948 as the Thunderbird and closed for good in 1992. For almost a decade the marquee advertised a future Countryland USA casino (with hotel towers shaped like cowboy boots), though by the mid-90's that project had fallen through along with a sci-fi themed "Starship Orion" resort as the property changed hands numerous times. An investigation by the local NBC station in 1999 found most of the building's interior had rotted away, though a small portion had been maintained in pristine condition (including working slot machines) as an attempt to attract a buyer. The state of Nevada finally ordered the property sold in 2000, and it was bought by a condominium company. The decrepit building was imploded later that year and, while part of the land was used for a neighboring casino project, the majority of the land remains vacant to this day.
  • The Ryugyong Hotel (Korean: 류경호텔) of Pyongyang, North Korea. Its name ("capital of willows") is also one of the historical names for Pyongyang. Construction began in 1987 but was halted in 1992 as North Korea entered a period of economic crisis after the fall of the Soviet Union. In 2008, construction of the building resumed, and the building is scheduled to begin partial operations in mid 2013.
  • The rebuilt World Trade Center in Lower Manhattan of New York City. Years after the events of 9/11/2001, the 16-acre site formerly known as "Ground Zero" remained depressingly empty. Plans for a new World Trade Center complex were approved in 2003, scheduled to finish by the 10th anniversary; a cornerstone was laid in 2004... and all work halted until late 2006 while financial and architectural lawsuits raged.
    • One World Trade Center proceeded with construction in late 2006 with foundation work to street level over one and a half years. It began rising above street level in early 2008, and finally finished development for tenancy in 2014.
    • Two World Trade Center has had assembly to street level occur from 2010 to 2013, but is currently on hold until a major company signs a deal to occupy the skyscraper.
    • Three World Trade Center had underground foundation work manufactured to street level from 2010 to 2013, but only had its concrete core (including its perimeter steel structure) topped out at maximum height in 2016. It is now scheduled to be completed by 2018.
    • Four World Trade Center began construction in 2008 with foundation work. It was built to street level in 2009 and fully constructed and opened 4 years later on November 13, 2013.
    • Five World Trade Center, which occupies the site that was formerly the Deutsche Bank Building, is on stand-by until a potential building developer and work tenants for occupancy are set.
    • A proposed Performing Arts Center, which may or may not be called “Six World Trade Center” sometime in the future, could not start construction until early 2016, due to the temporary exit from the PATH station still existing on-site. A permanent exit was finally built, allowing the temporary exit to be demolished. The building, now with a redesigned layout, is currently planned to be completed in 2020.
    • Seven World Trade Center is the only building to not fall victim to this trope as it is independent from the main site. Having a smaller footprint than the original red granite facade structure, the building’s construction proceeded on May 7, 2002 and achieved completion on May 23, 2006 (just a few weeks more than 4 years).
  • The Cityplace Center in Dallas was initially going to be twin towers on either side of Central Expressway with a skybridge in between. However, the real estate market crash of the late 1980s torpedoed plans for the second building (along with many majestically-planned skyscrapers in Dallas). The result is the building's dedication plaque reading "Cityplace Center East" with no counterpart on the west side of the freeway. The land initially allocated for the West tower is now used as an entrance to the Cityplace underground DART station (the only underground station in the system) and a turntable terminal for the McKinney Avenue heritage streetcar line.
  • The Elbe Philharmonic Hall in Hamburg, Germany is in construction since 2007, and was supposed to be finished in 2010, and finally did open in early November 2016note 
  • If you live in the Greater Orlando region of central Florida, you're well aware of the Majesty building in Altamonte Springs, or its more infamous nickname, "the I-4 Eyesore". While it's clear that progress has been made and will eventually be finished, it's a matter of what year. It's been under construction since 2001 and is owned by a local Christian television station. However, due to whatever funding reasons (largely donations), it's been labeled by its owners as a "pay-as-you-go" project, and recently made the news again for using memorial pavers to cover leaks.
  • The new airport supposed to be built in Berlin has been this due to politics and more. Originally planned to open in 2007, delays began almost immediately when lawsuits tried to stop the airport before the construction had begun. Construction finally was started in September 2006. A few weeks before a scheduled opening date it turned out that the fire protection systems were not up to any standards, not even to those for holding an opening ceremony, let alone running an airport. From there it went downhill.[[note]] this video gives a good overview Technical and other difficulties prevented several opening dates that were announced, currently the opening date is officially scheduled for the 2nd half of 2016. Several reports already mention a more probable opening date of 2018—a date still viewed with serious doubts by many. Part of the airport went on-line in May of 2015, but that was only as a substitute landing strip so that the airport Schönefeld—which is to be one of several airports to be replaced by the new airport—can repair one of its strips. Meanwhile Tegel airport, which is supposed to be shut down once the new airport opens is handling much more traffic than it was originally designed for and shows signs of its age, but a renovation is not in sight, because a replacement will "soon" happen.
  • Landmark Mall in the Washington, D.C. suburb of Alexandria, Virginia, was built in The '60s as an outdoor mall, but revamped in The '90s as a massive three-level indoor mall. While initially successful, it started to lose stores in the late 90s-early 2000s, starting with the central department store Woodward & Lothrop. That chain went out of business, and the location later became a very short-lived J. C. Penney, and then an even shorter-lived Lord & Taylor. Upscale developments and nearby existing malls such as Tyson's Corner and Pentagon City began leeching away the interior tenants. Then-owner General Growth Properties announced plans to tear down the mall and revert it back to an outdoor center in the mid-2000s, but these plans were halted by the economic downturn at the time, along with General Growth's filing for bankruptcy. After the center passed to new owners, the city of Alexandria approved demolition for 2014... then 2015... then 2016, with nothing happening other than the huge mall becoming increasingly vacant. It finally closed except for a Sears store at the end of January 2017.
  • Elk Grove Promenade in Elk Grove, California, a southern suburb of Sacramento. It was first proposed in the mid-2000s as an outdoor mall featuring traditional mall stores, but after the outer frames of the buildings went up, the Great Recession halted plans (while also killing off local department store Gottschalks, which would have had a location there). The center has sat vacant ever since in attempts to get it restarted, but plans were finally announced in 2016 to use the skeleton to build an outlet mall.
  • Pinnacle Nord du Lac was a planned outdoor mall in Covington, Louisiana. Construction started in 2010. A cluster of restaurants had been built, along with Kohl's, Hobby Lobby, and a sporting goods store. Several other retailers were committed to the project, including Dillard's and Barnes & Noble, and a new freeway exit off Interstate 12 was built to service the facility... but the economic downturn of The New '10s put the project on ice, leaving the "lifestyle" center of the project half built and untenanted. It sat for over seven years in a partially finished state before new developers finally acquired the project in late 2017 and announced plans to finish it.
  • In the Detroit suburb of Bloomfield Hills, construction began on an outdoor mall called Bloomfield Park, but was halted in 2008 due to the recession. The half-finished buildings sat vacant until spring 2017, when demolition began on all but a parking deck. The property was also renamed Village at Bloomfield, and new stores were announced for it.

    Comic Books 
  • An animated ElfQuest movie has been "coming soon" since the mid eighties. Though much of the (albeit scarce) pre-production art looks great, it's still never gotten further than that and will likely never be produced.
  • Sasmira: The second album of the series has been expected for 12 years and counting.
  • Kevin Smith's smash Daredevil relaunch got him on a comics kick which turned out to be more than he could handle. His Spider-Man/Black Cat miniseries had a gap of over three years between issues 3 and 4. During that time, most fans had dismissed the remaining issues as vaporware — as they have his Daredevil/Bullseye miniseries, whose only issue to date was published in 2002.
  • The manga-inspired Battle Chasers was meant to be Joe Madureira's magnum opus, spanning several years and hundreds of issues. However, thanks to his obsession with playing video games and, in the early 2000s, pretty much abandoning the industry to draw concept art for start-up game publishers, it petered out at about ten issues, with the final issue having a delay of about 1 1/2 years and ending on gigantic cliffhangers. A continuation had been promised, but going on eight years and beyond later it still hasn't materialized.
  • Firefly — "A Shepherd's Tale". Announced in 2007, finally released in November 2010.
  • Devil's Due Publishing has been putting off publishing Halloween comics, including the third and final issue of Halloween: The First Death Of Laurie Strode and the miniseries The Mark of Thorn (which had at least a dozen covers revealed) over and over again for somewhat vague reasons.
  • Neil Gaiman:
    • His introduction to The Sandman: Endless Nights mentions a story called Obsessional that he plotted with the artist of Going Inside. It involves the population of Manhattan joining a procession into the East River.
    • He was planning to do a Batman story illustrated by painter Steve Bisley, which was to be titled "Night Circus". This was during an interview in about 1992, and the story is still yet to appear.
    • Gaiman withdrew from Swamp Thing in protest over the controversial censorship of the intended climax of Rick Veitch's previous run.
  • Despite being created in late 2008, Gemini Storm issue one wasn't released until March 2010. Herbert claims production on issue two is moving along much more quickly.
    • Issue two was released last December and issue three's line art is done. Harrison Wood, the artist, has released half the pencils for issue four on his deviantArt account. Looks like it's been saved.
  • DC's "All Star" line has several examples. As the line has been discontinued and creators have moved on to other projects, it seems unlikely that they will be revived:
  • Sam and Max Plunge Through Space was a concept Steve Purcell was working with as a game and a comic, variously. It never got made and beyond fan discussion it probably won't see the light of day.
  • Ultimate Wolverine vs. Hulk had a 3-year gap between issues #2 and #3.
  • Issue #8 of Marvel Comics' The Twelve, a 12-issue limited series, came out in January 2009. Issue #9 came out over three years later, in February 2012.
  • In July 2015, Marvel announced that Tim Seeley and Logan Faerber were working on a new Blade series starring Blade's daughter, Fallon Gray. As of July 2016, it still hasn't shown up. According to Tim Seeley himself, a new artist has taken over, Afua Richardson, while he has quit due to fans throwing a shitstorm over a white man doing a black girl's comic.
  • Steve Moncuse announced in a 2010 interview that he would be reviving Fish Police. This is still the only acknowledgement of such a revival.
  • Archaia Entertainment announced a prequel to Labyrinth, an origin story for Jareth the Goblin King, in early 2012. It was supposed to be in stores by year's end, and the one-shot story "Hoggle and the Worm" was published in the company's Free Comic Book Day compilation to hype it. Then the date was pushed back to April 2013...but at the end of February it was pushed back again and its Amazon preorder page taken down entirely. The 2013 and 2014 Free Comic Book Day compilations each included an additional one-shot story, while the offical explanation for the delay on the main book was that the company didn't want it to go out until it was perfect, but as of 2016 the project is apparently dead.
  • Sky Doll is a Franco-Italian sci-fi comic started in 2000, whose very complex art style needs a long preparation time. However, the last issue came out in 2006, it is november 2015 at the time of this entry and there still aren't any actual news of the fourth issue outside of the title (Sudra) and some (admittedly gorgeous) preparatory sketches from 2012 or so. Since both authors are committed to other projects, it's unknown if they will ever finish this series.
  • Becoming Human, being written by a twelve-year-old, is currently in it. But it's technically Development Heck for her.
  • Sergio Aragonés Funnies had an 18-month gap between issues 7 (January 2012) and 8 (June 2013). This was due to Sergio Aragones needing an operation, which set everything back.
    • Speaking of which, the Groo vs. Conan crossover was originally announced in 2007, but got delayed several times for various reasons, the aforementioned operation being one of them. It finally came out in 2014, seven years later.
  • White Sand was written somewhere around 2005, and have since sat on Brandon Sanderson's shelf, awaiting a rewrite that would satisfy the author enough to publish it. The problem was, ever since that time Sanderson was writing either Mistborn, The Stormlight Archive or some other project and the rewrite was pushed back year after year until the book was rescued in 2016 by Dynamite adapting it into a graphic novel.

    Fan Works 
  • Ian Flynn's infamous comic Other-M is currently unfinished, and since Ian is head writer for the current Archie's Sonic and Mega Man comics it's likely to stay this way.
  • Fan works related to BIONICLE:
    • Both of the biggest CGI fan-film projects, Quest of the Toa and BIONICLE: The Next Generation. The first received notoriety among fans very fast for being produced (voice acting aside) by a single person. It seemed to have gotten pretty far, and was set to be released at the end of 2006, but around 2007, the author disappeared. He attempted to restart the project several years later, with little success, and he uploaded the last teaser video in 2010.

      As for BNG, it's had a very Troubled Production. Originally meant to be a series of feature-length 3D films, the project eventually separated into a 2D and 3D "team". The former produced a video short in the style of the old official BIONICLE Flash videos but due to the creators' other occupations, the project got canceled. However, the 3D team is still said to be functioning and working on a fan film of their own.
    • Quest of the Toa had two sister-projects going on: a fan-game based on the movie and the Lewa Q&A comedy series. Both have met such a fate, though to make up for losing the game files, the game's creator has set his sights on finishing a smaller fan project, of undisclosed nature.
    • BioCraft: Chronicles, a spoof-style fan film made using Minecraft, was set to come out at the end of '11. After being scrapped and started over, it was put on indefinite hiatus in '14, with plans to do something with it eventually.
  • Chapter 2 of the Star Wars fan film series IMPS: The Relentless was in post-production, "almost done", for four years. It was finally released November 2009. Only 6 more to go according to the website.
  • The Doctor Who fan film Devious, which follows a half-regenerated third Doctor working for the Time Lords, has been filming on and off since 1995. In 2009, a 12-minute preview, including the entire Jon Pertwee scene, was included on the DVD of "The War Games". Five years later, it still isn't finished.
  • An Animated Adaptation of the most famous arc of Sonic the Comic was in production for the 20th anniversary but nothing has been heard of it since the initial preview.

    Films — Animation 
  • By far the most famous example of this is The Thief and the Cobbler. At 29 years, it is the longest film production ever, most of which was spent in and out of development, much of it owing to Richard Williams's insistence that the animation for his masterpiece (yes, he really called it that) be absolutely flawless. He took to self-funding it with odd jobs after repeatedly missing deadlines for potential investors, and an ever-rotating staff, some of whom were fired before even starting, added bits and bobs to the film, much of which Williams eventually scrapped when he felt it didn't meet his standards. In the early 90s, following the success of Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Mirimax offered to help complete the film, so long as it was completed for a specific budget and met an exact deadline. Williams did neither, the studio fired him, and a hastily completed version was eventually released. Both Williams and his admirers disowned this version and, in 2013, it was announced that the film would never be completed, leaving what was finished stuck here forever.
  • The Movie of Clerks: The Animated Series. Originally planned as Clerks: Sell Out, wherein Dante and Randall decide to make a movie about their escapades in the Quick Stop, this got an animation test in 2006 and was supposed to go straight to DVD a little while after Clerks II. However, according to Kevin Smith, Disney still own the rights to the series and all designs related to it, which essentially negates all possibility of there being a movie any time soon.
  • The California Raisins. Plans for a California Raisins movie was considered in 2001 but it was scrapped, possibly due to Will Vinton losing his animation studio in 2002, followed by the death of the lead vocalist Buddy Miles in 2008. In 2015 it was announced that a Live-Action/CGI film adaptation was in the works and may be released in 2016 or 2017 but no further information on the progress of the project or who's starring in it.
  • The Bone movie. Partially delayed in Jeff Smith's refusal of Nickelodeon's demands of putting pop music in, apparently the rights are now with Warner Bros.. According to the latest news, it's in early stages of development. Smith doesn't seem very involved as of yet and makes very little comment on the animation/design, saying only that it is dynamic.
  • A sequel/prequel to Who Framed Roger Rabbit. One was attempted during, but floundered due to many problems at Disney, with Steven Spielberg, problems converting the characters to CGI, and a skyrocketing budget. Attempts to make a sequel anyway continue to be discussed, but Roger Rabbit remains one of the biggest film properties to never be properly capitalized. But between Bob Hoskins' retirement from acting in 2012 and his passing in 2014, it's unlikely to ever materialize (unless it's a prequel). The second film was also planned to take place during WWII and involve a bunch of wacky Nazis, which Spielberg outright refused, as he felt he couldn't satirize Nazis after making Schindler's List.
  • A CGI The Legend of Spyro movie was announced in late 2007, and posters emerged in early 2009 which slated the film for a Christmas release. The movie never came out, and it was later cancelled.
  • Dragon's Lair: The Movie which is supposed to be animated by Don Bluth himself, now a kickstarter campaign.
  • The CGI ThunderCats (1985) film, which was supposed to be made by the art director of Halo, which apparently reincarnated in the form of new Animated Series ThunderCats (2011), which premiered in July 2011 on Cartoon Network.
  • The Samurai Jack Movie. It seemed to be seeing the light of day again... in 2009. It ended up being secondary to a continuation of the TV series for [adult swim].
  • The Fairly Oddparents also had an animated film in Development Hell for a while. That Other Wiki says the "Wishology" specials may have started out as that movie; a live-action FOP TV movie that was meant as a conclusion to the series was eventually released in 2011, with a sequel released in 2012.
  • DreamWorks Animation has had a few:
    • Truckers: DreamWorks was supposed to do an adaptation of Terry Pratchett's book with Academy Award winning writer Simon Beaufoy writing the script and a set release date of 2012. The talks of making the film seemed to die down once the script was completed and everyone has since moved on.
    • Similarly, they purchased the rights to make a film adaptation of the comic strip Pearls Before Swine in 2006, shortly before they released their adaption of fellow comic strip Over the Hedge. Since then however, nothing has come of it.
    • An Aardman/Dreamworks project retelling "The Tortoise and the Hare" that might have featured Michael Caine as one of the voiceover performers withered on the vine.
    • Dreamworks also planned to adapt a character from the extremely obscure 1980s black-and-white furry comic Tales From The Aniverse in the early 2000s, but reps had a hard time comprehending the treatment that the comics' creator gave them.
    • Me and My Shadow, a film about a man's friendship with his Living Shadow that would have featured a unique blend of 3D and traditional animation, was scheduled to be released in early 2014 but seems to have fallen through the cracks after Dreamworks's split with Paramount.
    • B.O.O.: Bureau of Otherworldly Operations, a film centering on an agency of ghosts, was set to be released in the summer of 2015. It has now been put on the back burner due to DreamWorks' restructuring plans.
  • Blue Planet, a CGI sci-fi action movie planned by now-defunct Rainbow Studios (later aquired by THQ), with a video-game tie-in. A trailer was released, to widespread acclaim, which showcased the for-the-time high-quality CGI, parodies of Pixar's Toy Story and A Bug's Life characters, and a soundtrack featuring "More Human Than Human" by Rob Zombie. Much of the already-shot footage was recycled for the tie-in game, which was eventually released as Deadly Tide.
  • In the late 1990's, Fox and Matt Groening signed a deal to make three films based on The Simpsons. The first film was released in 2007. In 2017, it was said that a sequel was in "the earliest stages of development." Here's hoping it comes out soon...
  • Around 2003, 20th Century Fox planned to make an animated adaptation of the children's novel The Wainscott Weasel. They finally dropped the idea in 2006.
  • In 2001, Shrek producer John H. Williams founded his own studio, Vanguard Animation, which created Valiant, Happily N'Ever After, Space Chimps, and a direct-to-video sequel of the same. Their website shows several other projects in the pipeline, such as The Nut House (a heist film parody involving squirrels and acorns; no connection to The Nut Job), Rotten Island (adaptation of a book by William Steig, who also wrote the books that inspired Shrek), an adaptation of Roald Dahl's The Twits, and many more are mentioned in a 2010 press release. However, other than the October 2011 announcement of The Nut House, it seems Vanguard has vanished.
  • Paramount announced plans for a sequel to Rango in late 2011 but despite the film grossing over $100 million and winning an Academy Award, it looks like the sequel is no more due to Disney buying Industrial Light and Magic (who did the animation on the film).
  • In June of 2011, Paramount announced to develop an animated film based on the Penny Arcade comic strip The New Kid with Gary Whitta (The Book of Eli) penning the script and with Mary Parent and Cale Boyter of Disruption Entertainment producing the flim. There has not been any new updates about this project since.
  • Henry Selick's Shademaker began development in 2010 at Disney as part of a new foray into stop-motion animation for the studio with a set release date of 2013. Disney even set up a new animation studio in San Francisco for Selick to do the film and future projects. But in the summer of 2012, Disney dropped the film for no apparent reason and gave the rights back to Selick. Not long after, Disney closed the animation studio and now the film's future is up in the air.
  • Ever since the announcement of a Phineas and Ferb movie, there have been barely any details about it except that the movie would somehow combine live action and animation. The creators have even stated that the movie is in "development hell" until the project is now cancelled. This probably is due to the series' noticeable decline in popularity.
  • Ever since The Twisted Tales of Felix the Cat came to a unceremonious end, Felix the Cat has had numerous projects in the backburner.
    • In the early 2000's, three holiday movies featuring Felix were announced. Only the Christmas movie was released in 2004, while the Valentines and Halloween movies were never heard of again.
    • In September 2008, former rights-holder Don Oriolo stated that an All-CGI Cartoon revival of Felix was in the works, but nothing more came out of it. Oriolo sold the rights to the character to DreamWorks Animation in 2014, which in turn was taken over by NBCUniversal two years later, presumably canceling the project.
    • By March 2016, more talk of another Felix series (under DreamWorks) began to surface, with DHX Media (who currently represents the brand on behalf of DreamWorks/Universal) being involved.
  • In 2012, Universal announced that they would produce a live-action/CGI hybrid movie based off Clifford the Big Red Dog, with David Bowers attached to direct and Matt Lopez to write. It was scheduled for release in April 2016, but was pushed back to July 2017. Nothing more was revealed after that. Eventually Universal's rights expired and handed over to Paramount. No release date has been announced since then.
  • According to this 1996 article, the Sega Genesis game Vectorman was supposed to get an animated movie adaption, but it never materialized.
  • A Darker and Edgier CGI version of The Wind in the Willows was supposed to come out in 2012. 2012 has been and gone, and nothing's happened, so it's presumably entered this trope.
  • Yuriy Norshteyn's The Overcoat, a stop-motion film using cutouts. Largely a single-man project, with the man working on a lot of other projects and suffering from severe perfectionism. Probably the current record holder, being in production since 1981; as of 2004 only 25 minutes out of planned 1 hour were ready. A number of preview fragments have been released.
  • Disney's remake of Yellow Submarine, cancelled after the record-setting box office failure of Mars Needs Moms.
  • Seth MacFarlane has been in talks to make a Family Guy feature film since 2007. He stated in 2008 that he planned to produce the movie within the next year, and has given similar responses to the movie's production in recent years.
  • A Marvin the Martian hybrid CGI/live-action film was announced in 2008, with Mike Myers voicing Marvin. It was planned to come out in late 2011/early 2012, but vanished without a trace. The only thing to materialize out of it since was some leaked test footage.
  • Along with the above mentions Marvin the Martian film, a Hong Kong Phooey CGI/Live-action film was also announced along side it, with Eddie Murphy to voice the title character. Test footage was released in 2012, but nothing else had came of the film until casting information sprang up in late 2014. The film as of resent appears to have been Saved from Development Hell, as a release date of September 18, 2015 has been announced. The day has approached, but no film.
  • The Waterman Movie, based on the Flash animated web series Waterman, has been in development hell since at least 2010. The film was announced in 2007 and was financed through crowd funding. What makes the film notable is that it is the last film appearance of the late Leslie Nielsen, who had recorded all his dialogue for the film before his tragic death. Many planned release dates have been made, going back as early as Winter 2007, and as late as Christmas 2012. As of March 2015, no information on the film has come up since June 2011.
  • A CGI animated adaptation of the popular comic The Goon, with the voices of Clancy Brown as The Goon and Paul Giamatti as Franky, was announced back in 2010, with a fully animated and voiced trailer being released. An official poster was also released claiming the film will be released theatrically. Due to financial troubles, Blur Studios launched a Kickstarter, which it successfully reached in late 2012. No information has come up since then. In March 2015, Blur Studios had an update on the Kickstarter project claiming it was close to finishing the movie.
  • Sony put the All-CGI Cartoon film adaptation of Popeye on hold after director Genndy Tartakovsky left the film's production. He cited Sony Pictures' Executive Meddling as a result of the hacking scandal as a reason for leaving the film, irritated that despite very positive reception to the film's test reel Sony's executives would not give the go ahead to start production. There's still hope that the film is alive, however, as Sony Pictures Animation's website continues to list Popeye as an upcoming film despite losing Tartakovsky. On a more positive note, the setback has allowed Genndy to move onto developing his original film, Can You Imagine?.
  • A UK animation studio named Kaleidoscope announced in 2013 a Toy Story-like film called Once Upon a Time in the Kitchen, starring Nicholas Hoult, Gemma Arterton and Stephen Fry as the stars. The main premise was to be "a kitchen divided between everyday utensils and the snooty best silver from the other side of the table". The film was aimed at for a late 2014 or early 2015 release, but with almost no signs of movement and them missing the release dates, it seems to have fallen into Development Hell.
  • The New York Institute of Technology set out to create the world's first feature-length All-CGI Cartoon called The Works, being worked on sporadically between 1979 and 1986. Unfortunately, the poor performance of TRON, competition from Lucasfilm, and an increasing lack of interest by the creators brought production to a halt, but the goal of a feature-length CGI animated film was eventually met with Pixar's Toy Story.
  • Pixar:
    • Brad Bird's 1906, an animated adaptation of the 2004 novel based upon the 1906 San Francisco earthquake, was picked up by Disney, Pixar and Warner Brothers with an estimated budget of $200 million, which ultimately played a role in the film getting pushed back and rewritten numerous times by Bird in order to lessen the film's scope. Eventually, Pixar and Disney dropped the project over lack of confidence, and Brad Bird left production as well, leaving only Warner Brothers to carry the film and leaving its future unknown.
    • Pixar had plans to release a film entitled newt, about two newts that were experimented on by scientists and want to fall in love with each other. Because Blue Sky Studios' Rio had a very similar premise to this idea, the project was handed over to Pete Docter, who proposed a different idea that would become Inside Out.
  • Frequently occurs in Disney Animated Canon:
    • Disney announced in 2008 that a 3D adaptation of Philip K. Dick's short story "The King of the Elves" was scheduled for 2012, but the project got shelved in 2009. Reports in 2010 and 2011 claimed that the project had gone back into development with a new director and script writer and concept art has been leaked, but there hasn't been any news on that front since then. It's been assumed the project has been quietly cancelled.
    • Disney was working on a romance film loosely based on The Prince and the Pauper named "Kingdom Of The Sun" in the 1990s. Due to a Troubled Production and differing developmental views the film was pushed back a year and eventually heavily retooled into The Emperor's New Groove.
    • In the early 1990s Disney announced several films however none ended up being made: Swan Lake, Sinbad the Sailor, Homer's Odyssey, Song Of The Sea, and Silly Hillbillies On Mars. The Swan Lake adaptation is the only one that has been discussed since. It was cancelled due to being too similar to The Little Mermaid. A Disney-esque film called The Swan Princess was later made by a competitor, killing off any future attempts at a Swan Lake adaptation.
    • Gigantic was announced as Giants in 2013 with a 2016 release date. Its release was delayed to 2018 in 2016, then to 2020 in mid 2017, then indefinitely later that same year due to issues with the story. Unsurprisingly, the plot changed dramatically from the initial announcement to the cancellation. Inma was changed from a side-character human to a protagonist Giant Girl, most of the characters were presumably scrapped, and the tone completely shifted. One of the troubles of the film being in development hell was that the girls meant to play Inma either kept on aging out of the roles or would age out by the time voice acting began.
    • Disney has toyed around with a film featuring all their animated film characters for years, to no avail. One attempt was a film called The Search for Mickey Mouse. In it, Mickey Mouse disappears and Basil of Baker Street must find him. It was cancelled because the writer's couldn't figure out how to make all the cameos into anything more than quick-paced fanservice.
    • Disney almost adapted Where the Wild Things Are. The film would have featured traditionally animated characters upon CGI backgrounds.
    • In the mid-2000s, a film called Fraidy Cat was shown off at events. It was ultimately canned because it was thought that children wouldn't get, or understand, the plot. It starred a cat in London and spoofed Alfred Hitchcock films.
    • A Fractured Fairytale based off Little Red Riding Hood named Little Red's Wolf was in production during the late 1990s/early 2000s. It was shelved due to being too similar to the then-upcoming film Shrek.
    • Disney has announced plans for several films in the past, however they weren't specified as either live action or animated (though signs point towards the latter): an adaptation of Don Quixote, an adaptation of The Nightingale, a film set in Africa called The Song of Sundiata, a film about birds called The Last Songbird, and a film about apes helping British soldiers during World War II called Scruffy.
    • A film alternatively titled My Peoples, Angel and Her No Good Sister, and A Few Good Ghosts was in development in the 2000s. It would have been set to a bluegrass score and featured the voices of Dolly Parton and Lily Tomlin. The plot would have been about a family of ghosts possessing various wooden figures, and it would have employed Medium Blending: the physical characters would be traditionally-animated while the wooden figures would have been in CGI. Unfortunately, Disney's decision to abandon traditional animation causes the project to be cancelled in November 2003, shortly before the Florida studio that was making the film closed in January 2004.
  • The film adaptation of Tailchaser's Song has become this. Announced in 2011, it's stated to be an All-CGI Cartoon adaptation. It was supposedly going for a 2016 release however nothing has been heard of it for years.
  • This page gives details about a number of animated films and shorts from 2007, including the concept for something named Bones Story by Pierre Coffin (one of Despicable Me's creators), and a CG movie about Crazy Frog, the infamous ringtone mascot from the mid 2000s, that was to be preceded by 52 one-minute shorts. None of them were ultimately made.
  • A trailer released by Sony back in 2014 revealed plans for a Sly Cooper feature film slated for a 2016 release. Due to a lack of new footage or information combined with how Ratchet & Clank bombed at the box office, many fans speculated that it was pulled altogether. In June of 2017, the film was confirmed cancelled. It was instead being reworked into a cartoon series.
  • Disney and Mandeville Films announced a live-action/CGI hybrid adaptation of Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers in 2014, to be directed by advertisement director Robert Rugan. Exactly nothing else has been heard about the project since then.
  • Heathcliff:
    • Heathcliff: Bad Kitty was an All-CGI Cartoon film meant to revitalize the franchise. Only the initial teaser is known to exist despite distribution rights being discussed and it having a $5 million budget. Bad Kitty was supposed to come out in 2011 however it and its cartoon series have seemingly been quietly canceled.
    • Waterman Productions (who produced Casper, Alvin and the Chipmunks, and Stuart Little) made a deal in 2012 to make a live action/CGI hybrid film of Heathcliff. Nothing has been heard since.
  • Fox announced an adaptation of the Maxis Studios video game Spore in 2009, a year after the game was released, with Blue Sky Studios producing and Chris Wedge directing. There have been no subsequent announcements since then, and with the underperformance of the later spin-off Darkspore, its future is in doubt.
  • An untitled Nicktoons crossover movie directed by Jared Hess was in development, but as of April 2016, nothing has been heard of, since then.
  • Back in the late 70s and early 80s, there were plans of a French-Hungarian co-produced Animated Adaptation of Voltaire's Candide, which were halted when the director's feature film debut bombed, followed shortly by him passing away. Fast-forward to the 2010s, when the project got reimagined as a mini series, taking guidance from the creator's original notes and adapting his excessive Deranged Animation to modern media. Should this get finished, the idea would be Saved from Development Hell in some form.

    Film (In Universe) 
  • In Argo, this is the supposed fate of the Argo film project, after the U.S. embassy personnel are rescued from Iran. ("It's in turnaround.")
  • The Last of Sheila: This is why Tom the screenwriter hates Jerkass movie producer Clinton Greene. Clinton bought the option to Tom's dream script some years ago, and refuses to make it, and also refuses to let go of the option.

    Literature 
  • Donald Knuth's The Art of Computer Programming was started in 1962 (which may as well be the Bronze Age as far as computer programming is concerned) and not all the volumes are out yet. Initially not helped by Knuth deciding to create a typesetting system from scratch since he was not satisfied by what was available.
    • Not entirely accurate, he didn't decide to develop the typesetting system until after the reissue of the first volume in 1977. He began development of the typesetting system (called TeX) in 1978, and it ended up in its own development hell as well, the input format not being finalized until 1989.
  • Timothy Zahn and Michael Stackpole collaborated on a six-issue Star Wars Expanded Universe comic for the X-Wing Series which bridged over into Zahn's Thrawn books. It's called The Reenlistment Of Baron Fel. But the X-Wing Series comics were canceled abruptly. So Zahn and Stackpole worked on the script and turned it into a four-chapter novella, something that they've done before. And Del Ray did not buy this script. Both versions are languishing on their hard drives, and it's been something like ten years since the X-Wing Series was going.
    • It's particularly frustrating when you see that in 2005 someone came out with a three-issue X-Wing Series comic, Rogue Leader, which had nothing to do with Stackpole and is generally considered inferior due to Off-Model art, rampant decompression, and a basically pointless storyline, without even any good character interaction, that could be summed up in two sentences: "The Empire will fight even without an Emperor, and some of its people are monsters. Luke Skywalker leaves Rogue Squadron to do Jedi things." It's likely dead now that the Star Wars literature written prior to the introduction of the sequel trilogy is no longer canon.
  • Stephanie Meyer put off writing Midnight Sun because an unfinished copy was leaked. She said in 2008 that if she can go two years without hearing anyone mention it, she may begin work on it again once "everyone's forgotten about it", but that clearly did not happen.
    • She also has talked about working or planning to work on a story from Renesmee's point of view, a story from Leah's point of view, a mermaid story, a ghost story, and a time travel story. There's no sign of any of these. Nor of her The Host sequel.
  • A Song of Ice and Fire: After the first three books were published over four years, A Feast for Crows took five years to complete due to an aborted five-year Time Skip in the plot. A Dance with Dragons took six years to complete. The Winds of Winter has taken more than four years to write. The delays over the books have caused Game of Thrones to overtake the books.
  • Another book example is the Harlan Ellison-edited anthology The Last Dangerous Visions (sequel to Dangerous Visions and Again, Dangerous Visions). It was originally announced for 1973 and has not yet appeared as of 2014; Ellison still claims he's eventually going to release it. As he's now 80 years old, it's not looking likely.
    • There's even a (short) book about this fiasco, The Book on the Edge of Forever, by author Christopher Priest (most famous for The Prestige). When you consider that TLDV was slated to include stories by long-dead authors such as Frank Herbert, Alfred Bester, and Cordwainer Smith (who died in 1966!!), this is the very pinnacle of development hell. Priest's "The Last Deadloss Visions," the basis for The Book on the Edge of Forever, can be read here.
      • Cordwainer Smith's story, "Himself in Anachron" was published in a collection, The Rediscovery of Man: The Complete Short Science Fiction of Cordwainer Smith. Ellison was not happy, but eventually some sort of settlement was made.
  • Diane Duane has been somewhat notorious among her fans for this. In her Young Wizards series, there was a eight year gap between the release of A Wizard Abroad and The Wizard's Dilemma, and a five year gap between Wizards at War and A Wizard of Mars, which was released in April 2010 after getting pushed back by its publishers about six times. Finally, there is the Tale of the Five series which has lain unfinished for nearly eighteen years now, with the last part, The Door into Starlight having gone unfinished since 1992, but she promises she is still working on it.
  • David Gerrold's fans have been waiting for the fifth The War Against the Chtorr novel (A Method for Madness) since at least 1994. And it's only the third-to-last in the series. Gerrold, of course, is getting up in his years, and Author Existence Failure could result in an Orphaned Series.
  • Quite a few by Neil Gaiman. In the world of Neverwhere, The Seven Sisters and How the Marquis Got His Coat Back. In the world of Stardust, American Gods, and Anansi Boys, Wall (the prologue has been published) and a story about Tristran going to Hell in a hot air balloon.
  • The Captal's Tower, third book in Melanie Rawn's Exiles Trilogy, is still nowhere to be seen 13 years after the release of the second book.
  • David Weber is responsible for this in two series.
    • The Hellgate Series, cowritten with Linda Evans, ended the second book on a cliffhanger and there's no sign from the publisher or the authors that a third book will ever come out.
    • His Prince Roger collaboration with John Ringo has had no development since 2005 in spite of fandom interest in the series continuing. A Face Book post by Ringo suggests he's looking to change that status, however.
  • There were rumors for years about a sequel to The Princess Bride called Buttercup's Baby. In some editions of The Princess Bride, this sequel was mentioned in the epilogue and was "having trouble getting published due to legal problems with S. Morgenstern's estate". An address was also listed that readers could write to for information. This was of course, completely fictional since S. Morgenstern is an alias made up by the REAL author, William Goldman. Still, people who wrote in got a sample chapter (which was simply published in later editions). In 2007, Goldman stated he actually wanted to write it, but was having trouble coming up with ideas. Nothing has been heard since.
  • Orson Scott Card and Kathryn H. Kidd's Rasputin, a sequel to 1994's Lovelock and the second in The Mayflower Trilogy. Still listed as a work in progress on Card's website.
    • Card has a similar situation with his Pastwatch series; as of 2010, he stated that he was still wanting to work on the series.
  • Universercus, the promised third book in Gillian Rubenstein's Galax-Arena trilogy, is yet to be more than briefly mentioned at the end of Terra Farma (which was published in 2001). Even though the auther has published books since then and left the plot gaping open!
  • For the Warrior Cats series, they announced in Feb 2010 that there would be some sort of online multiplayer game based on the books. They picked beta testers in March 2010, saying that the game would be out at the end of 2010. Though for a while they kept listing the release of the game in the "marketing/publicity" section for each new book in HarperCollins' catalog, the beta testers never got another message after the one saying they were picked to be one, the gamemakers didn't make any posts on the official forum to keep fans updated on the game's progress though they'd promised to (to the point that the subforum for it was, eventually, removed because it confused new members). There have been one or two surveys about what fans would like in a game since then, but they have never made any official statements saying whether or not it's cancelled.
  • A Gone with the Wind sequel entitled "Tara" was nearly published by author Anne Edwards in the 1980s; it was apparently well-written, as the few who read it gave it very good reviews. It was never published due to legal problems with the estate of Margaret Mitchell.
  • The Repossession Mambo (which was adapted as the film Repo Men) was written in 1996 but did not find a publisher until 2008. However, the manuscript had been circulating in Hollywood for some time and the film was greenlighted a few years before the book was published. The film also suffered through post-production hell as Universal shelved it for two years.
  • The Railway Series was slated to have a book titled Barry the Rescue Engine, but Christopher Awdry has not yet completed or released it.
  • The Last Great Tortoise Race, the third and final Nursery Crime book by Jasper Fforde. The page on his website saying it will be published "Spring 2012" still exists, but the current "upcoming books" page doesn't mention it at all.
  • The fourth book in The Millennium Trilogy (which was originally planned as ten books). Stieg Larsson had a 75% completed manuscript when passing away but it has never been published due to an ownership dispute (Larsson's then-girlfriend claims to hold the rights since she retains the computer that held the manuscipt but after Larsson died, his parents got the rights due to Swedish law giving the properties of a person who died unmarried to their surviving parents or next of kin). Since Larsson could not get married due to Swedish law making any married couple public (Larsson had made many enemies as a news reporter and he believed that his life becoming public would allow him to be the victim of an assassination, therefore insisting that his privacy be protected), his girlfriend tried to use this as an attempt to gain the rights (since the two were already very much a couple otherwise) but failed to convince the courts. At this point, any attempt to complete the manuscript is near impossible. Because of this, the publishers requested another writer to continue the series despite not being based from Larsson's manuscripts. The fourth book, The Girl in the Spider's Web was released in 2015 which received mixed reviews.
  • Bruce Coville's The Unicorn Chronicles. After writing books one and two in fairly quick succession (1994 and 1999 respectively), and leaving the captive audience with a massive cliffhanger, he then dropped off the face of the earth for nine years before publishing the third book in 2008… which ends with another cliffhanger. Coville even lampshades this in his author's note, saying that he feared fans of the first books would have outgrown the series before he finished it. Fortunately, The Last Hunt was released in June 2010, less than two years after Dark Whispers.
    • Coville also has a number of books he'd LIKE to write, including further installments in The Unicorn Chronicles, the Magic Shop series, the Nina Tanleven series and others. Unfortunately, publishers don't seem interested. The truly curious can find references to many of these works and others in his replies on the guestbook of his official website.
  • The tenth and final book in the Night World series. It's been more than a decade since the last book came out, and the publishers even re-released the earlier books in pretty omnibuses in anticipation of Strange Fate. Alas, she is still writing it.
  • Myth-O-Mania' books IX, X, and XI landed here in 2003, after Hyperion let the series go out of print. IX and X were Saved from Development Hell in 2013, and 2014, respectively, and published by Stone Arch under the titles Hit the Road, Helen! and Get Lost, Odysseus! However, XI remains unfinished. According to the epilogue of VIIInote , it would retell Jason's search for the Golden Fleece. Its delay has received some in-universe lampshading.
  • The Wise Man's Fear, the second book of The Kingkiller Chronicle, was published in 2011, three years after its initially-anticipated release date. Despite Patrick Rothfuss having released the companion novella The Slow Regard of Silent Things in 2014, the third book of the trilogy is still nowhere in sight.
  • Markus Zusak (The Book Thief) has been writing his next novel "Bridge of Clay" for nearly a decade. The book was orginally supposed be released back 2011.
  • Scream of the White Bears was a xenofiction book by David Clement-Davies. It was about polar bears living in a world where their environment is quickly changing. There was a prophecy that a cub with one black paw would be born that could save them. Unfortunately, the book's project didn't get enough funds and the book was never published.

    Live-Action TV 
  • A movie adaption of Phenomena was announced for the public early in 2012. But nothing new came up. One and a half year later during the summer a twitter account surfaced called @Phenomena Writer, led by the script writer for the pilot as he wanted to adapt it into a TV-series. The first script was rejected despite Ruben Eliassen liking it. On and off writing did he finally get a accepted script late in 2014 and they tried to get funded on AFM. Not funded anything or a little bit there, probably because the books hasn't been translated to most languages (including English…) did they have to wait until summer 2015 to presented a dumbed down version on Cannes probably it'll take less of a budget, maybe getting a bit more. Trying again at AFM 2015 in hope of getting the rest. Most fans loving the books since the first was released in 2002 will maybe be in their late 20s or 30s before it really comes along.
  • K9 was first announced in 1997. It subsequently premiered in the UK in 2009, airing its full season in Scandinavia in 2010.
  • The Disney Channel series JONAS suffered from this. The original plan was to launch the vehicle for The Jonas Brothers with the band serving as a front for a group of secret agents (think a Kim Possible meets Hannah Montana hybrid) with the name standing for "Junior Operatives Networking As Spies). For whatever reasoning, that didn't fly, resulting in Retool after retool, ultimately culminating in a standard, run of the mill sitcom (albeit sans Laugh Track). Then after a botched launch on Saturdays where iCarly cleaned its clock, it went through yet another retool after the first season, and with the Jonas Brothers fading among teenagers, turned into an unexpectedly depressing soapish dramedy in the second season, renamed, JONAS LA, (yes, it's in ALLCAPS). JONAS LA was canceled, because of predictably low ratings.
  • A TV show based on the novel series The Cheetah Girls was announced by Disney Channel to premiere in 2003; however, it was cancelled after filming only four episodes, none of which aired. That would instead become The Cheetah Girls film, which spawned two sequels.
  • The team behind Human Giant announced that MTV had allowed them a third season. Unfortunately, they couldn't film much because Aziz was busy on Parks and Recreation. Since then nothing has been said.
  • The Sci-Fi Channel announced in 2002 that they would produce a Quantum Leap television movie featuring Sam's daughter as a new leaper. A proposed release date of 2004 was given, and the movie's writer even gave a QL fansite an interview about the plot, but ultimately nothing ever came of it.
  • A few years ago, a planned live-action Star Wars TV series was announced, but since then there hasn't been much news about it. Reportedly, it will be a Darker and Edgier episode-based show that focuses on the minor characters of the series rather than the main storyline, and will take place between Episodes III and IV.
    • It seemed to pick up a bit after the CGI Star Wars: The Clone Wars started doing well, but has been put on hold because they couldn't figure out how to do Star Wars on a TV show budget. The title has been announced to be Star Wars Underworld.
      • Since then, Disney bought the franchise and immediately set about making a new trilogy, plus several spin-off movies with the aim of making one Star Wars movie a year after 2015. Given the amount of money Disney are funneling into the new movies, it's looking very, very unlikely that Star Wars: Underworld will ever be made.
  • ER's Pilot script was written in 1974 but the show wasn't filmed until 1994.
  • Adapting Super Sentai over to Power Rangers was a very difficult task. There are reports that Haim Saban had been planning to adapt Bioman, which was made 8 years before. the first seasons to be adapted Zyuranger.
    • Also Marvel planned to adapt Super Sentai into Power Rangers with Executive Margaret Loesch being laughed out of building similar to Saban. Loesch eventually gave up and the rights reverted back to Toei, but as fate would have it Loesch was the very person who gave Haim Saban the go ahead to do the series.
  • Entertainment Weekly reported in 2010 that a remake of The Wild Wild West (the series, not the movie) was being developed by Ron Moore and Naren Shankar for CBS; exactly nothing else about the project has been announced since then.
  • HBO and producer Scott Rudin optioned to develop a television series based on ''Indie Game: The Movie'' back in 2012. However, it seems unlikely to ever be materialized due to Rudin’s unexplained antics causing his exclusive deal with HBO to end and putting their other projects into jeopardy.
  • A spinoff from Buffy the Vampire Slayer focusing on Giles to be called Ripper was on the drawing board for years once the original show ended in 2003. It's probably safe to say the actual spinoff will remain the only one...
  • No fewer than ten pilots were made between 1996 and 2010 for a revival of the Pyramid game show franchise. Even with a successful revival from 2002 to 2004, the pilots just kept coming in the subsequent years. A revival launched on GSN for a short time in 2012, and another finally started in 2016 on ABC.
  • In September 2011, FX started advertising a series called Untitled Jersey City Project with a vague "Coming Soon" mention (which probably meant it would start in Winter 2012). Cut to Summer 2012 and the show still hasn't aired (and according to some reports, the show was never intended to air and was instead supposed to be an ad for the Audi A6).
  • The fourth series of Torchwood ended on a massive cliffhanger, and Russell T. Davies said that he intended to do a fifth season in America (where part of the fourth series was filmed.) Unfortunately, his partner fell ill, requiring him to move back to the UK so they could be closer to their families while he underwent treatment. While there, he started developing Wizards vs. Aliens as a replacement series for The Sarah Jane Adventures. The majority of the cast have said they'd like to do more, but there's no definite answer regarding when or if that'll happen. It didn't help that "Miracle Day" was not very well received.
  • From 1999 until picked up in 2016 by ABC, there were at least two attempts to revive Match Game: One in 2004 was titled What the Blank?! and intended for FOX; the other was to have aired on TBS in 2008. Both stopped at the pilot stage. Going back even further, three revivals have been produced since 1982 and neither lasted a full season, counting The Match Game-Hollywood Squares Hour (two more attempts in the mid-80s were unsuccessful). However, 2013 did bring a revival on The Comedy Network in Canada, with comedian Darrin Rose hosting, and a 2016 revival joined ABC's lineup alongside a new version of Pyramid.
  • The American version of Red Dwarf never got past the two pilots made, seems NBC really wanted to create their own version but couldn't capture the spirit of the series.
  • The only classic Doctor Who story with half or more of its episodes surviving that has never been released on DVD is the Patrick Troughton story "The Underwater Menace", because the animation studio commissioned to replace the missing episodes 1 and 4 decided to 'focus on higher priority projects'. (A trailer for it had already been released as a special feature for the DVD release of "The Moonbase".) This fuels speculation on the "omnirumour" (a theory that holds all/most of the Who Missing Episodes have been found and the BBC is keeping them hidden) - some people theorise that the BBC is refusing to pay for animated recons of the episodes, because it found them soon into animation development. However, the animation quality of the recons has been steadily increasing (note the beautiful Animesque "The Moonbase"), so a more plausible theory is that the complexity got to the level where it was significantly more difficult and expensive for the animators to do it than anticipated.
  • At one point in time there was talks of a Fallout tv show. But so far nothing has been said about it. There have however been a fan series announced called Fallout Revelations at Comic Con 2016.
  • There was also Blood and Chrome, a prequel series of Battlestar Galactica. Three webisodes was made for YouTube. But after that nothing else was heard about the prequel series.
  • It was always insisted upon that Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country did not necessarily represent the last appearance ever of any of the the original Enterprise crew, just the last appearance of them together. And indeed, they have made sporadic individual appearances up to and including the present. Knowing that Sulu was now captain of the Excelsior, producers gave fans the idea that they were considering a series (or even movies) about Captain Sulu. Nothing was ever done to discourage these rumours. Nothing was done, however, to give evidence that anyone was seriously ever working towards the adventures of Captain Sulu. Most agree that they may have seriously considered it but ultimately elected to foucs on the current generation and limit appearances by original crew characters to cameos and guest appearances, and a straight continuation of 'the original Enterprise crew going about on their adventures' seems very unlikely given Leonard Nimoy's death.
  • Marvel Comics:
    • A Moon Knight TV show was announced in 2006, and writer Jon Cooksey confirmed he was working on it in 2008. Nothing more has been heard since.
    • A Night Thrasher TV show for the UPN was announced in 2002, with the character billed as "A superhero for today's generation." Work began on a pilot script, but nothing further was ever reported about the project.
    • Guillermo del Toro was working on a new Hulk live-action show for a while, but the project was shelved after the Hulk became a Breakout Character in The Avengers. Del Toro has said there is still a slight chance the project could happen, but that it gets less likely with each passing day.
    • Likewise, Jeph Loeb announced a Mockingbird series alongside the aforementioned Hulk show in 2011. The show would've featured Bobbi Morse as a college freshman working for S.H.I.E.L.D., with the plot revolving around her trying to balance her double life as a student and a spy. The series was presumably buried for good when an alternate take on Bobbi Morse was introduced on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. instead.
    • Speaking of which, there were plans for Mockingbird and Lance Hunter to star in an Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Spin-Off called Marvel's Most Wanted. S.H.I.E.L.D.'s Season 2 finale was meant to set up the new series, but plans were delayed when ABC passed on the project. Another attempt was made the following season, with Mockingbird and Lance being written out of the show and Marvel filming a pilot for Most Wanted, which featured Delroy Lindo as Dominic Fortune. Things then fell apart again when ABC rejected the pilot, with the show's fate seemingly being sealed when Adrianne Palicki left to join the cast of The Orville.
    • An X-Men show called Hellfire was announced alongside Legion, with plans to air on Fox. The series would have seen a secret agent trying to thwart the Hellfire Club's plans for world domination during The '60s, similar to X-Men: First Class. Fox ultimately passed on Hellfire in favor of ordering The Gifted, a different X-Men show.
  • Wonder Woman:
    • In the 90's, Warner Bros. announced plans for a live-action Wonder Woman pilot, but it fell apart before filming began. Comic book artist Nicola Scott was actually one of the women who auditioned for the lead role, and made it to the final round before the plug was pulled.
    • Warner Bros. announced in 2011 that a Live-Action Adaptation of Wonder Woman was to be produced as a series. NBC picked up a pilot after initially turning it down. However, after the pilot was finished and screened to the standards & practices division, NBC turned it down, knowing it will not be something the audiences and fans alike will enjoy.note 
    • In 2012, it was announced that the The CW was pursuing a Smallville-style series called Amazon, which would have focused on a teenage version of Diana in the years before she actually became Wonder Woman. Initial casting began after Allan Heinberg wrote the script, with the CW aiming for a debut during the 2014/2015 television season. The project was eventually put on hold in favor of The Flash, and was later shelved indefinitely. The announcement of a Wonder Woman movie for 2017 seems to have ensured the project will never see the light of day, as DC/WB generally dislikes having conflicting live-action versions of their characters.note 
  • In 2013, the CW also announced that they were developing a series based on Hourman from the JSA. In a departure from the comics, the series would've been a mostly In-Name-Only adaptation about a young man who discovers that he has the ability to see tragic events an hour before they occur. No further news about the project was released after the initial announcement, and an alternate (and more comic-accurate) take on the Hourman character was later introduced in Legends of Tomorrow.
  • A television series following up on the film 2012 was proposed after the film's success, but cancelled due to budgetary concerns.
  • In 2011, it was announced that Prime Focus - the company that made the Discworld Made For TV Movies - were in discussions with Terry Pratchett concerning a TV series based on the Watch, which Sir Terry described as CSI: Ankh-Morpork. In 2012 it was announced that this was now being done by Sir Terry's own production company Narrativia, and that The BBC Worldwide were very interested and were bandying about terms like "the next Doctor Who". Since then, the only word is that it is still progressing, but only once they're sure they can do it right.
  • Various attempts have been made to get an adaptation of V. C. Andrews's Landry Series made. First by CBS (who had also bought the rights to the Cutler Series) in the mid-90s as a four hour miniseries, which was canceled after the executive who wanted it was no longer apart of the network. CBS tried again in 2002, which quickly went nowhere. Lifetime then started development for a miniseries under the title The Landry in 2007, but the writers' strike disrupted those plans and the possibility of moving to another station came up due to money issues with the Lifetime before it was abandoned. In 2013, it was announced that the project was going on again, and development started in 2014, with rumors of Warner Bros. Television involved.
  • Kamen Rider Kuuga was planned to have a movie which would take place after the events of the TV series, but the staff could never come up with a script that really suited the idea, and after spending five years in Development Hell the plans were finally canned for good in 2006.
  • While the final season of How I Met Your Mother, CBS announced on the fall of 2013 that there will be a spinoff entitled How I Met Your Dad which would be aired on 2014. By that time, various news sites revealed the new characters unrelated to HIMYM cast and the new lead to be played by Greta Gerwig with Meg Ryan as the lead's voiceover and the pilot was already made. But after the mixed reception of the HIMYM finale, interest slowly dwindled, the pilot wasn't picked up by CBS, Carter Bays called it quits due to disagreements with CBS and the contracts of the actors expired at the end of the year. As of 2015, there's still no information if the spinoff would ever continue other that Gerwig confirming that it didn't work out.
  • It's been announced back in 2013 that there will be a live-action TV series of Monster to be produced by Guillermo del Toro and HBO. As of 2015, there's no information yet considering that Del Toro is notoriously known for having a lot of projects in his hands.
  • The concept for the game show Combination Lock has been floating around the game show industry since 1996, when it was piloted for the United Kingdom with Ross King hosting. Pilots were shot in 2006 and 2007 with Marc Summers and Ty Treadway respectively hosting, but neither was picked up due to King World being merged into CBS Television. The 2007 pilot was filmed alongside a revival of The Joker's Wild which also never made it to air.
  • TNT ordered a pilot for a live-action Teen Titans series called either Titans or Blackbirds, with a script by Akiva Goldsman. The series would have focused on Dick Grayson moving out of Batman's shadow and becoming Nightwing, with the show's team of Titans including Starfire, Raven, Oracle, and Hawk and Dove. There was a lot of enthusiasm for the project, but the network eventually stated that the series had been put on hold over issues with the script and worries about the over saturation of the superhero genre.
  • Speaking of which, a Smallvile-style series called The Graysons was in the works for a while. The series would've focused on a young DJ Grayson in the years leading up to the murder of his parents and his subsequent transformation into Robin. The CW ordered a pilot, but the whole series was scrapped for not fitting with WB's plans for the Batman franchise at the time.
  • The CW began discussing the possibility of a Battle Royale adaptation for TV in 2012, but a spate of high profile school shootings have made it extremely unlikely that the show (which would have focused on high school students killing each other with weapons) will ever make it to air.
  • Two examples involving 1985 Sci-fi/Horror film Lifeforce:
    • In November 22, 2013, Ringleader Studios announced the acquisition of the rights to develop a TV Series based on Colin Wilson's The Space Vampires. At the point of this writing (August 2016) no further news on the project are available.
    • In May 5, 2015, Chiller TV announced a TV series based on Tobe Hooper's Lifeforce that was supposed to be out by the end of the same year. At the point of this writing (August 2016) no further news on the project are available.
  • Back in 2012 or 2013, there was talks of a live action Resident Evil TV show called "Arklay". But so far nothing else has been heard about it.
  • A few years ago there was gonna be a darker reboot of Captain Power.
  • The Steven Spielberg-produced Halo TV show for Showtime. Announced at E3 and hasn't been heard from since.
  • The reboot of Tales from the Darkside for The CW.
  • In 2015, NBC ordered a revival of the 1980s sitcom Coach starring Craig T. Nelson; however, various problems resulted in the show's cancellation shortly after just beginning production.
  • Commando Nanny, the only scripted series ever produced by Mark Burnett, was announced as part of The WB's fall 2004 lineup, but an egregious case of Troubled Production - including star Phillip Winchester breaking his foot and Gerald McRaney undergoing lung surgery - caused the sitcom to be scrapped altogether.
  • NBC picked up Day One, a sci-fi drama about apartment residents that survive an unknown worldwide cataclysm that destroys modern infrastructure, for midseason in 2010. It ultimately got reduced from 13 episodes to a four-part miniseries, then a standalone TV movie before being shelved permanently.
  • Eight Days a Week was picked up by The CW for the the 2007-2008 season. Unfortunately, the writers' strike put that show to a halt before any post-pilot episodes were produced.
  • Subverted with NBC's Emerald City, which was initially canned due to disagreements with producer Josh Friedman, but was later restarted with a new writer and a 10-episode order.
  • Friend Me, a 2012 CBS sitcom about workers at Groupon, was canceled due to the suicide of head writer Alan Kirschenbaum.
  • A series named Galantyne, akin to Revolution was ordered by AMC in 2014, and a pilot was even filmed, but for unspecified reasons the show was cancelled.
  • A Philippine soap opera entitled Haram was to air on GMA-7 starring Robin Padilla's daughter Kylie, but due to its subject matter involving Muslims, along with hostile reaction to the video Innocence of Muslims overseas, it was eventually shelved out of respect for the said community.
  • Hieroglyph, first picked up in October 2013, was cancelled by Fox in July 2014 without even filming an episode besides the pilot.
  • Before Arrested Development, Jason Bateman was set to star in an NBC sitcom titled The Jake Effect for broadcast in early 2002. It unfortunately was dropped after filming seven installments, six of which were aired on Bravo in 2006.
  • A TV prequel to the 1999 film Cruel Intentions, Fox's Manchester Prep, was cancelled for, well, being too risque for broadcast TV. The pilot eventually got released Direct-to-Video (with some additional nudity and coarse language added) as Cruel Intentions 2.
  • Members Only was a prime time soap starring John Stamos that was supposed to be part of ABC's 2014-2015 midseason lineup. However, co-creator David O. Russell left shortly after it was ordered, and the drama was subsequently shelved.
  • Misconceptions, a planned 2006 midseason series for The WB, was cut to just six episodes, and ultimately failed to make The CW's inaugural fall lineup.
  • NBC's Mission Control, a sitcom starring Krysten Ritter and Michael Rosenbaum, was cancelled without filming any episodes other than its pilot.
  • NBC axed the Dane Cook comedy Next Caller after filming four out of its six-episode order, citing creative differences.
  • The Scott Baio comedy Rewind, despite being highly promoted over the summer of 1997, was suddenly cancelled by Fox without any explanation.
  • The U.S. version of The IT Crowd first aired on NBC in February 2007, and was subsequently picked up to air in early 2008. However, it ended up being pushed back to fall 2008, but ultimately never got a place on the 2008-2009 schedule. Fortunately, the pilot did leak onto YouTube.
  • The WB ordered the Adam Sandler-produced sitcom The Mayor for midseason 2003-2004, but quickly withdrew its six-episode order due to poor creative direction.
  • The Men's Room was an NBC sitcom starring John Cho that was supposed to air in early 2005, but production was shut down after six installments, and none of them ever aired.
  • Schimmel, a eponymous sitcom starring Robert Schimmel, was pulled from Fox's fall 2000 schedule due to the actor undergoing treatment for lymphoma. Though it was rescheduled for midseason 2001, it was ultimately cancelled.
  • Yet another NBC comedy, The Singles Table, was cancelled after filming only six episodes and none airing.
  • Snip, a 1976 comedy about a man and his ex-wife who are both in the same hairdressing school, which is run by an openly gay man. The show was likely pulled due to concerns about having an openly gay character, which was very abnormal at the time.
  • Star Trek: Phase II was announced in 1977 to debut in 1978 as part of the proposed Paramount Television Service. But in August 1977, those plans would fall apart, as Paramount CEO Barry Diller decided that Phase II would be better as a live-action film, resulting in the creation of Star Trek: The Motion Picture, which inherited the first script of the unmade series.
  • Thick & Thin was prematurely axed despite being announced as a midseason replacement for 2005-2006; creator Paula Pell and co-star Chris Parnell returned to Saturday Night Live afterwards.
  • Fox originally ordered 13 episodes of Us & Them, but cut the order to seven before shelving it permanently.
  • CBS ordered Waterfront as a midseason series for 2007; however, creative and financial issues led the network to axe the series after completing just five episodes.
  • Syfy got Masi Oka and Alex Sabeti to co-write the pilot for a time travel series called The Correctors (presumably about Time Police or those who Set Right What Once Went Wrong), with Oka also slated to produce the pilot and perhaps also co-star. Unfortunately, the pilot never aired for unknown reasons (although Oka's absolutely insane schedule probably made keeping him around difficult).
  • Fox got Masi Oka to co-write and co-produce the pilot for ESL, a comedy about an English as a Second Language class, with Zak Shaikh as co-writer and Ben Queen as co-producer. While the pilot was slated for 2015, it never surfaced.
  • Fearless was officially placed on the 2003 fall schedule by The WB, but later delayed to midseason (One Tree Hill appeared in its place) and then canceled without ever being broadcast.
  • The Grubbs was cancelled by Fox two days before its premiere, supposedly due to bad reviews.
  • The Ortegas, an American adaptation of the British sitcom The Kumars At No. 42, was cancelled a few weeks before it was supposed to debut.
  • All My Babies' Mamas was set to premiere on Oxygen in early 2013, but was cancelled in the wake of public outcry and a subsequent petition.
  • CBS ordered Arranged Marriage in mid-2009, but for unknown reasons, it never aired.
  • Buy It Now was originally slated to be part of ABC's summer 2006 lineup; however, eBay pulled out of the series' participation before it debuted, resulting in its cancellation.
  • Do You Trust Me?, a CBS game show hosted by Tucker Carlson, shot six episodes in 2007, but didn't make it to the air at all.
  • ABC announced Let's Dance in 2009, only to cancel it in November due to casting difficulties.
  • Marie, a syndicated talk show hosted by Marie Osmond, was scheduled to debut in the fall of 2009. However, despite being cleared in 80% of the country, it was withdrawn by Program Partners over a month before it even debuted, leading to several affiliates dropping the series as well. Finally, in 2012, it aired on the Hallmark Channel.
  • Our Little Genius was a game show produced by Mark Burnett and hosted by Kevin Pollak, that was supposed to premiere in January 2010 with American Idol as a lead-in. However, a week before its debut, it was pulled at Burnett's request due to concerns about integrity; Fox would eventually shelve the series for good.
  • Surprise with Jenny McCarthy was announced in May 2012, only to be scrapped in January 2013.
  • The CW ordered the reality game series The Frame in late 2010, and nothing has been heard of it since.
  • After being picked up by Fox in 2007, When Women Rule the World got delayed three times; it was planned to debut that summer, then pushed back to early 2008, then to June 2008, before the network ended up pulling the plug on the series for good. However, the United Kingdom did get their own version of the show on Channel 4 in September 2008.
  • ABC axed Welcome to the Neighborhood before it aired in the summer of 2005, likely due to its inappropriate subject matter.
  • Despite premiering on TV in 1968, The Mod Squad began as a pilot written in 1960.

    Myths & Religion 
  • In some traditions, God needed more than one go at creating a female help and companion for Adam. In Jewish tradition, His first go was called Lilith, who proved to be surly, combative, stubborn, unbiddable and headstrong, to the point where she was dispatched to Satan to work for him. Woman 1.1 was of course Eve, who was programmed to be subordinate to Adam by the simple means of using one of his ribs to symbolise that as Adam came from God and is subordinate to Him, Woman came from Man and thus is subordinate to her husband. Outwardly submissive and passive, Eve fell for the persuasive talk of another male, the serpent. Thus it could be argued that from a Judeo-Christian perspective, the whole world (hardware) and the human race (software) is God's Development Hell...

    Pinballs 
  • In a milder example than most, development of Stern Pinball's Shrek was delayed — and the costs raised — due to demands and red tape from Smash Mouth as well as the films' actors.
  • John Popadiuk has been accused of letting his pinball machines in the 2010's languish in development hell. This came to the forefront in late 2014 when he showed two empty cabinets of the machines he had been working on during Pinball Expo 2013, then showed up with the same two empty cabinets for Pinball Expo 2014 while other producers had since been created and produced playable prototypes. Whether or not this is actually the case is uncertain — Popadiuk is incredibly secretive and prefers to reveal as little information as he can, which can give the impression that progress is slow — but the fact remains that both Magic Girl and Retro Atomic Zombie Adventureland have had at least 3 years in development when most other industry professionals spend no more than one.
    • A development blog and preview site for Magic Girl were finally revealed in February 2015, providing numerous images of the game's backbox and playfield art, audio and video clips, and other game elements. While a release date has still not been announced, it shows that some progress has been made.

    Pro Wrestling 
  • The matches for the first season of Wrestlicious were filmed in 2008 but did not air until 2010. In 2011, Viacom sent a letter of intent to pick up a second season, whose matches were done before the year was up but never did get around to airing.

    Puppet Shows 
  • The Jim Henson Company has been planning a Fraggle Rock movie and The Dark Crystal sequel for quite some time. Every now and then, they'll announce The Dark Crystal sequel, but no progress appears to have been made. This was parodied by Robot Chicken, which joked that the primary reason it's not going forward is that today's kids don't want to watch an all-puppet film. As well, many fans are skeptical as to whether there needs to be a sequel when the original's ending left no plausible room for one (indeed, the graphic novel Expanded Universe consists of prequel stories). Frank Oz, who has not been asked to participate in the production, has only one thing to say about the proposed sequel: "Why?". In early 2012, the film was shelved indefinitely due to 'budgetary concerns'; instead TJHC has moved on to producing a fan-written prequel novel as part of a contest, not to mention a Netflix prequel series.
  • The idea for a Muppet movie known as The Cheapest Muppet Movie Ever Made was originally floated in 1985. It's presumably about Gonzo directing a Muppet movie and he blows half the budget on the opening titles, resulting in the movie progressively getting shittier and shittier to the point where a shot of the same street corner is used for every city in the world. The title card was revealed in September 2009, but it was subsequently set aside in favor of The Muppets.
  • Then there's talks about a third Sesame Street movie, which tapped Shawn Levy to produce.

    Radio 
  • The Star Wars Radio Drama adaptation of Return of the Jedi ended up shelved for a decade due to Ronald Reagan's cuts to NPR's federal funding.
  • In 1976, Tom Baker cowrote and attempted to produce a Doctor Who movie, Doctor Who Meets Scratchman, that got caught up in Development Hell due to the implosion of the British film industry in the 1970s recession. Big Finish Doctor Who has expressed interest in doing it as an audio drama, but according to Baker it's unlikely it will ever go ahead due to copyright issues between the intended producer of the film version.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Warhammer 40,000: Since updates to rulebooks and models for different armies are largely based on player demand, and player demand is in turn based on the availability of up to date rulebooks and models, some teams spend years in development hell. This was exemplified by the Dark Eldar who went over a decade without an updated codex while the much more popular Space Marines received seven. They were mercifully Saved from Development Hell with an excellent new codex and model range, but others haven't fared so well.

    Games Workshop recently started work on updating older books, which thankfully will see a resurgence of the forgotten armies. However the Sisters of Battle are notable in that while they're not as old as the Dark Eldar, they might very well have to wait quite a bit longer given that they're getting a Magazine Codex (which usually means development on them has halted and they're just getting lip service in the meantime). Even more notable is that the army is so old, they're the only ones who still require you to use metal models for the entire army (every army, even the Necrons and Dark Eldar, had plastics for troops. Sisters are not so lucky).
    • With the release of the Necrons during the halloween of 2011, the Sisters of Battle is now literally the oldest range, having not received a new model in the longest time.
    • In-universe, this is also currently happening with Abbadon the Despoiler's 14th Black Crusade. It's been in limbo for ages because Abbadon has his heart set on getting all the surviving Traitor Primarchs to participate. Considering how much they all hate each other, it's unlikely to happen any time soon.
    • As of July 2015, there is still no update for the Sisters of Battle, as in no new models, no new hardcover codex etc etc. Some rumours were made about a fully new range of miniatures but even these disappeared quickly after.
  • Gary Gygax had always wanted to release a version of his iconic "Castle Greyhawk", the location that pretty much launched Dungeons & Dragons while at TSR. Due to his busy schedule as the head of TSR, and his writing duties on a myriad of other modules, he never was able to complete or even start the module. (His being sent to Los Angeles to develop the D&D cartoon series didn't help either). In 1982, the module had been advertised in Dragon Magazine, but as of 1986, when Gygax left the company due to "Creative Differences", no module had been published. In '87, TSR did a wild and mostly unfunny parody version of the Castle that bore no resemblance to Gygax's design. It was seen by many gamers as little more than a parting shot against Gygax, and the module has been pretty solidly rejected by players and pretty much disowned by TSR and Wizards of the Coast, leading to a second try at the module which was much more warmly received.
    • Still, that wasn't Gygax's castle, one that wouldn't see print until 2008, when "Castle Zagyg" was published by Troll Lord Games. Sadly that one went straight back into development hell after Gary died shortly after the first installment was released and the deal Troll Lord Games had with Gygax fell apart when his wife took control of the company. Nobody's sure what exactly happened, all people know is that in 2008, Gygax Games was going to find a way to publish the rest of the castle. It is now 2012, and as of this writing, the Gygax Games website has been ofline since at least 2009, still promising "something good in the works."
  • This blog post describes the 17-20 years of development hell experienced by one Champions book.
  • "d20 Spectaculars" was a Super Hero add-on to d20 Modern that was supposed to be published by Wizards of the Coast in 2006, but it never materialized - possibly because Mutants & Masterminds already had rules for d20 supers and did it very well, possibly because that's when they started work on 4th edition.
  • Dungeons & Dragons 4th edition was supposed to be released alongside a series of software tools. The most notable was a "virtual game table" allowing people to play live D&D online, complete with 3D models of characters and monsters. The virtual tabletop was postponed and the game came out in 2008 without any of the promised tools. The subscription-based Dungeons & Dragons Insider service did eventually provide some of them, such as the Character Builder, Monster Generator, and Rules Compendium (with less functionality than originally promised in some cases), but several others including the tabletop were still nowhere to be seen. The virtual tabletop eventually went into beta testing, but lacked the promised 3D models or the (absolutely crucial) ability to use one's own maps, and was officially cancelled in mid-2012. Later that year (on the most generous reckoning), 4th Edition was basically abandoned in favor of developing a new edition. By then there were several free virtual tabletop programs available online, though none had all the features of the version WotC had planned.
  • Exalted Third Edition began development in 2011, was announced in 2012, had a very successful Kickstarter in 2013, and the developers have yet to release even the core rulebook. The current estimate is early 2016. The Troubled Production included such elements as having to pull off massive rewrites, the departure of one writing staff member due to creative differences, and one of the developers coming down with some messy medical issues.
  • Steve Jackson Games is perpetually prone to this trope, because Steve Jackson is a perfectionist who tries to be involved in everything his company does. After all, everything they ship literally has his name on it.
    • GURPS: Girl Genius seems to be in perpetual limbo, possibly due to an edition change since the Foglios wrote most of the content, perhaps because the Foglios have lots of other, probably more profitable work in hand. Other GURPS examples might include:
    • GURPS The Difference Engine - announced in October 1991 for 1992 publication. The problem was said to involve the original assigned writer suffering a fatal accident, and the license will long since have expired, so this one can be considered defunct.
    • Similarly, GURPS Alvin Maker - announced 1992 for 1993 release, and apparently to have been written by Orson Scott Card himself. (It's possible that this one is simply waiting for him to finish writing the actual series...) Again, the license agreement will have expired.
    • The third edition did have a GURPS Middle Ages I (which dealt with Britain), and there was supposed to have been a Middle Ages II (for the continent) which never materialized. However, there's no evidence of that even having been started; sales on volume I may simply have been too disappointing for the project to continue.
    • GURPS Thaumatology did eventually appear after only a moderate delay. However, the excuses for that apparently included both the author and the editor experiencing some fairly bizarre (unrelated) health issues, and the publisher being mugged. As the book was about exotic magic systems, there was some joking discussion of a possible curse.
    • The entire line, including several partly-completed books, suffered significant delays in 2012-3, along with some other projects from the publisher, Steve Jackson Games. This was mostly because the company had decided to use Kickstarter to fund a relaunch of their classic board game Ogre, which had proved so spectacularly successful that delivering on the promises made devoured most of the company's time and resources.
    • The OGRE Kickstarter, meanwhile, shipped a year after the initial estimates.
    • GURPS Vorkosigan Saga took so long to get out that it was only up for sale for about a year before the license expired.
    • In Nomine ran so far behind that one year, the staff went to GenCon wearing shirts reading "For God's sake...do NOT ask about IN NOMINE" with a FAQ on the back.
  • Capcom World Tournament was delayed for a while, then put on hiatus, due to issues with Living Room Games being unable to guarantee a profit through traditional distribution and being unable to risk alienating retailers with distribution methods that would be more likely to turn a profit, like electronic-only format or Publish On Demand. It's still not officially "canceled", despite their decision allowing the license to lapse and their not being able to release it now if they wanted to. This particular bit of vaporware essentially killed the company, too.
    • There was some talk of releasing it with the Capcom elements removed, but Living Room Games folded due to the financial loss incurred by not actually releasing the game before this could happen. Many RPG fans are disappointed, as by all accounts, it was one of the best and most novel applications of the d20 system ever.
  • Mekton is pretty much the (barely-) living definition of Development Hell for Tabletop RPGs. Plans for a new edition, using R Talsorian Games' then-new Fuzion system, were announced in the late 1990s. This version, Mekton Double Zeta, stalled very quickly, and very little was heard from it. RTG then sold Mekton to Atomic Rocket Games with the intent of either producing a new edition or alternatively putting Mekton Zeta back into production. Instead, ARG sat on the licence and did nothing with the IP before selling it back to RTG, while retaining a limited licence to produce supplements and Sourcebook material (As of 2010, they have only produced a few short PDF products). At some point after that, the Fuzion version was dropped with development of any new edition being effectively cancelled. In 2009, Mike Pondsmith, the game's original creator, returned to the company and announced a new version, Mekton ZERO, was in development; however, as yet, no details of the new edition have emerged and there has been no activity from RTG beyond random posts on the Mekton mailing list from Pondsmith, and even those have ceased.
    • A Kickstarter campaign for Mekton Zero has since come and gone. Nothing has been heard since.
    • In the 1990s, RTG licenced Mekton to a Japanese company to produce a Gundam RPG. In about 2000, RTG then licenced this RPG with the intent of eleasing an english translation in the West. Since then, there has been no news on the progress of the translation, despite being 'in progress' for nearly a decade.
    • Mekton Zeta itself was subjected to a lot of development hell. The first sourcebook for the edition was out over a year before the rulebook was released. The mecha in it were contructed with a hybrid of Mekton II and Zeta rules and contianed a number of substantial differenes to the construction rules from either. By the time that Zeta was released, the rules had been further revised, leaving the book effectively obsolete and unsupported.
  • Airfix Models, one of the first companies releasing plastic model construction kits and scale military miniatures, realised in the middle-to-late 1970s that its product range was becoming hopelessly outclassed and surpassed by newer-established competitors with better designers and newer equipment. The company set about redesigning and revamping its 1950s and 1960s-tooled kits and figures, earning critical acclaim for some of the brand-new designs. Then it went bust. The history of Airfix for the next nearly thirty years was one of its best lines being cherry-picked by rivals, or else owners intent on milking the tired old models for whatever profit they generated. It was only in the 2010's, under good management prepared to invest, that the company was able to resume its programme of retiring the worst and most indifferent older models and introducing retools. Modellers and table-top wargamers alike have been very enthusiastic concerning the new models. But now Hornby, the new owners, are in financial trouble...

    Theater 
  • Richard O'Brien has, for years, planned on making a sequel to The Rocky Horror Show. So far, however, nothing beyond a few rumors and some scrapped script ideas. All that's known about the yet-to-be-made sequel is that it would've involved Frank N Furter coming back to life.
    • Ditto for its film version, which was originally going to be followed up with a straight sequel, titled Rocky Horror Shows His Heels. Numerous factors, including the unavailability of certain cast members and a reportedly incredibly lackluster script, ultimately led to its transformation into the 1981 box-office flop Shock Treatment, touted by O'Brien as "not a prequel, not a sequel, but an equal". Though it uses characters and setting from the first film, it's more of a Spiritual Successor than a sequel. O'Brien tried his hand at writing another straight sequel to the Picture Show, resulting in Revenge of the Old Queen, which was leaked onto the Internet and began making the rounds in the late '90s, though it reads more like a glorified Fan Fic.
    • Last year, O'Brien announced that he had finally begun writing the playbook for a sequel to the stageshow, entitled Rocky Horror: The Second Cumming. See the Discussion page for a more detailed version.
  • The severe postponing of the Belgian production of Tanz der Vampire. This may be due to the severe fiasco that was Dance of the Vampires, the disastrous Broadway adaptation. (In short: The producer had it rewritten into a spoofy comedy, thinking that would play better to Americans, and then allowed lead actor Michael Crawford more control over the show than songwriter Jim Steinman.)
  • Jim Steinman has been trying to get a Bat Out of Hell musical off the ground pretty much since the album was released, even stating in interviews it's a concept album that he imagines being adapted to the stage. But after the complete mess that was Dance of the Vampires, Steinman was all but blackballed from Broadway. He still claims he'll make the Bat Out of Hell musical a reality one day, though, even though he face yet another setback in 2006 when Meat Loaf successfully sued for the rights to the title.
    • Bat Out of Hell was intended to be the music for a Rock Opera that never happened. At some point, Meatloaf must have decided to release it without the stage show because it was a lot of work to not get published.
    • Also Jim Steinman wrote music for a proposed Batman musical.
  • Vanities: The Musical was planned to be staged on Broadway at the Lyceum Theatre in 2009, but due to the recession, this was "postponed indefinitely", and thus its New York debut was relegated to a short run at the off-Broadway Second Stage Theatre.
  • The Broadway version of Love Never Dies was set to open Fall 2010, but it was pushed back first to Spring 2011 and then indefinitely. Andrew Lloyd Webber still wants to get it to New York, but so far has had no success.
  • Heart and Lights, a Rockettes vehicle that was supposed to be an annual springtime attraction for Radio City Music Hall, cancelled its premiere engagement just days before opening night in March 2014, citing script issues. A new director and choreographer were hired, and it ran in Spring 2015 and '16 as The New York Spring Spectacular.
  • In The New '10s alone, musicals that have successfully run elsewhere and intend to get Broadway productions include:
  • A musical adaptation of The First Wives Club had a limited engagement in San Diego in 2009 that was hyped as the pre-Broadway tryout, but after it closed it lost its director and saw no other productions for years afterward. A Retooled version with a new director, book writer, and choreographer opened in Chicago in 2015, but did so poorly that Broadway plans died with it.

    Theme Parks 
  • Dubailand as a whole.
  • EPCOT has had plans to add more countries to the World Showcase for decades now. Among plans include a Mt. Fuji themed roller coaster in the Japan area, which eventually led to Expedition Everest at the Animal Kingdom.
  • The "Flying Turns," a modern replica of a wooden roller coaster popular in the 1930s, has been under construction at Knoebels Amusement Resort in Elysburg, Pennsylvania since 2006. The main engineering problem appears to be recreating a 1930s ride that can also meet 21st century safety standards.
    • Ah, Flying Turns. By now a punchline among coaster fans. With the countless of times the trains have been rebuilt, track has been reconfigured and all the testing that ultimately went nowhere, Knoebels has continually added new rides to hold the public over year after year. It finally opened on October 5th, 2013.
  • Decades, the Rock'N'Roll theme park in Arizona, which got approval to be built by the state government but never saw the light of day mostly due to money problems and probably because they could not get licensing and permission from the artists themselves. Looking at these proposed plans will give you an idea.
  • The long-rumored third theme park at Universal Orlando Resort. Plans were discussed as early as 1998, during the expansion of the pre-existing Studios park that led to Universal Orlando Resort and the Islands of Adventure park. However, by the early 2000s, with the September 11th attacks and the economic downturn that resulted from it, Universal tabled the plans and sold off the land it was slated for to pay up debts. Cue The New '10s, and with NBCUniversal's purchase by Comcast and the success of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, Universal bought much of the undeveloped land back for $130 million, leading to rumors that the third park may finally be back on the table.e
  • In June 2015, Universal filed a patent for an "interactive game floor system", with drawings hinting that a real-life, interactive Pac-Man ride was in the works. The project is now most likely stalled due to development on Super Nintendo World, suggesting that Universal likely had this idea as a backup plan in case they were unable to secure the theme park rights to Nintendo franchises.

    Video Games 

    Web Comics 
  • The Princess Pi story "Princess Pi vs. Dr. 8" appears to have entered this. The list of Princess Pi villains released back in 2011 showed a drawing of Dr. 8, and described his gimmick as using mathematical calculations to determine the most effective evil schemes. Additionally, a post that cartoonist Peter Paltridge made on the Toon Zone forum compared his personality to that of Charlie Sheen. Despite all these details, Peter never gave a release date for the story.note  Considering how many other comics and articles he must make, it seems highly likely that he'll never release it.
  • In Muertitos, the equivalent of Hollywood is actually called Development Hell, in a Shout-Out to this. The story arc it appears in actually primarily parodies Adaptation Decay and So Bad, It's Horrible, however.

    Web Original 
  • One of the most infamous examples in the world of web originals is ProtonJon's let's-play of Superman 64. The test video went up in December of 2007, with the trailer coming out a month later. The LP wouldn't properly start, however, until mid-2010, and updated once every few months for some time. However, after Stage 5, the playthrough started seeing the delays it would become infamous for, with Stage 6 being released nearly 9 months after Stage 5. After that, the next stage would be put off for nearly a year, and the one after coming out over three years later. Stage 9, the most recent episode as of this writing, came out roughly 7 months later. At this point, the LP is nearly 7 years old and is just over halfway done. While Jon was already infamous for his erratic upload schedule since graduating from university, the numerous delays besetting the project (tech issues, personal problems, working on other solo projects, writer's block, and the death of the seller of one of his capture cards, among others) have become the butt of many jokes among fans. The exact timeline of the LP is as follows:
    • December 1 2007 - Test video
    • January 26, 2008 - Trailer
    • June 17, 2010 - Stage 1, parts 1 and 2
    • September 24, 2010 - Stage 2, parts 1 and 2
    • October 13, 2010 - Stage 3, parts 1 and 2
    • January 7, 2011 - Stage 4
    • July 27, 2011 - Stage 5
    • May 6, 2012 - Stage 6, parts 1 and 2
    • January 31, 2013 - Stage 7
    • July 23, 2016 - Stage 8
    • February 25, 2017 - Stage 9
  • Parodied in this Onion article: Script Has Been Floating Around Hollywood For 75 Years
  • The Masked Girl had a year between release of the opening and release of the actual first episode.
  • Jack Douglass teased a YouTube version of "Choose Your Own Adventure" in 2008. Since then, he's gone on to create a number of successful projects, including "Your Grammar Sucks" and "JackAsk", but nothing more has been heard about CYOA.
  • Shiny Objects Videos promised a fully stop-motion animated video back in 2010. It, uh... hasn't panned out.
  • As part of their July-August 2013 Indiegogo fundraiser, Channel Awesome raised funds for three new shows: a pop culture game show called "Retro Pop Culture Challenge", a new comic book show, and a video game-based trivia show "The Gaming Gauntlet". As of December 2014 the pop culture show has apparently been filmed and is in post-production, but nothing has come of the other two shows.
    • One of the shows, apparently now called Pop Quiz Hotshot, has had a few pictures of the set for the show pop up over time, featuring other site contributors such as The Cinema Snob and Linkara, and even some test footage as well as an audition sign up page have popped up on the website. Very little of the show popped up since then, until March 31, 2015, when a pilot episode for the show was released.
  • Go to the Trope Launch Pad and you likely see unfinished tropes that have been there for MONTHS. Which is why we have the TLP Bump handy to keep developing trope concepts alive.
  • An in-universe example: In Homestar Runner, the game Dangeresque 3: The Criminal Projective, was in production for 4 1/2 years before finally being released in SPCG 4 AP Episode 4.
    • The site itself hadn't had new content since December of 2010 until the April Fool's Day special was released in 2014.
    • Their games aren't free from it, either: the periodically updated Stinkoman 20X6 had level 9 added in 2005, with a promise of the final level "coming soon". Over 10 years later, it hasn't been released yet.
  • Worm was preceded by years of failed drafts. That's part of why so many minor characters have fleshed out backstories - several were originally planned to be the protagonist in earlier versions of the story.
  • "Pimp Lando X" from the Pimp Lando series, which only has had a teaser released...in 2008.
  • Shot On Shitteo, an intentionally shlocky comedy-horror anthology from Brad Jones was supposed to come out in 2014. Shot on VHS tapes, the stories featured a killer wheelchair, rapist squirrels and an irate filmmaker. Production began in 2013 and was suppose to be very fast. Unfortunately, a snow storm hit Springfield during filming forcing the shoot to be postponed and Brad later got too occupied with The Reviewers to continue. The biggest blow to the film came when Jake Norvell was fired from The Cinema Snob site and as he played a huge role in the first story, all of the shot footage had to be discarded. Brad was toying with editing the existing footage into fake trailers with a new story but thought against it feeling as that approach would greatly hurt the film. Legal issues concerning Jake also got in the way. In the end, he simply pulled the plug only hinting that the footage will be mysteriously leaked. Brad has stated that the revenue obtained from the v-logs covered all the costs on the aborted project.
  • Rooster Teeth's Day 5 has been mentioned to have begun development in podcasts from early 2012. It finally came out in June, 2016.
  • A series of "webisodes" based on Garth Ennis' Crossed were announced in March 13, 2013. So far, no further news about the project are available.

    Western Animation 
  • The three Code Lyoko OVAs. Reports conflict as to whether they were finally cancelled, but evidence points to the latter.
  • Nelvana holds the rights to the Little Critter characters and at least a couple of scripts were written around 2000, but nothing further has been heard since and it is assumed development was dropped.
  • Hasbro had planned two DVD releases based on the character TJ Bearytales and even released a music video featuring this character on a My Little Pony 'n Friends DVD. The DVDs were slated for release in either late 2007 or early 2008, but neither ever materialized.
  • This webpage (Wayback Machine archive) has information on five series that qualify, they include Spinoff(s) of both Rugrats and Hey Arnold!, a clone of Teacher's Pet, a Animesque series like Avatar: The Last Airbender and a series that was supposed to be based off of a comic book. Another page (on the same website) has information on a show that was originally aired as a 15-minute short in 2002. But no more information has surfaced on it.
  • An animated series based on the comic book series The 99 was announced to be one of the launch programs on The Hub, no word about the series has been heard since its announcement in March 2010
  • A DTV animated movie based on Castlevania III: Dracula's Curse, with character designs by James Jean and a script by Warren Ellis, was announced in 2007, but no further developments has been made. It finally came out in July, 2017, as a Netflix original show.
  • The fourth season of the 2010 reboot of Pound Puppies has not been renewed and production of the series has stalled indefinitely due to poor ratings and the failure of the toy line.
  • In the 2000’s, there was talks about a Crazy Frog cartoon and an animated film at that time. Nothing has been materialized.
  • Robotech Shadow Rising is the proposed sequel to Robotech: The Shadow Chronicles. Its fate is reportedly tied up with the schedule for the proposed live action movie on which no progress is known to have been made since its announcement in 2008.
    • Shadow Rising has been put on hold in favor of another film project, Robotech: Love Live Alive, which was released on DVD with the special edition reissue of Shadow Chronicles in July 2013. Love Live Alive took the 50-minute OVA Genesis Climber MOSPEADA: Love Live Alive and added 40 minutes of new bridging material written and conceived by the late Carl Macek to create a full-length feature designed as a direct lead-in to Shadow Rising. Shadow Rising is still MIA, after an abortive 2014 crowdfunding attempt to produce a pilot called Robotech Academy came to naught.
  • The Magic 7, which apparently was a fantasy TV special with environmental messages, begun production in 1990, was first announced for a release in 1997, but hasn't seen the light of day ever since. Two of the actors who had recorded lines (John Candy and Madeline Kahn) even died ever since the project started.
  • The second season of the ThunderCats remake, that was going to last 39 episodes, had not been renewed and remained on indefinite hiatus. It was eventually canceled, ending the series on a cliffhanger, finishing only half of its planned run.
  • The sketch series MAD was not renewed for a fifth season and was halted indefinitely. Since Cartoon Network has now taken the show off the schedule, it's likely been quietly canceled.
  • A series reboot of The Flintstones produced by Seth MacFarlane was announced in 2011. Problems with MacFarlane's schedule means that the series has gone no further as of 2013. It appears to be cancelled, as FOX's rights to the reboot expired and returned to Warner Bros., who opted to release a Direct-to-Video movie featuring the characters interacting with wrestlers from WWE. Seriously.
  • Fearless Photog was a character created for a 1986 He-Man and the Masters of the Universe (1983) contest by then twelve year-old Nathan Bitner. Among other prizes the winning character was supposed to have entered into production. Unfortunately, the He-Man toys had stopped selling by then, so the entire line (including the Photog figure) was canceled. It wasn't until 2012 and after a massive case of "whatever happened to...?" on the Internet that Mattel finally made Photog, selling him to adult fans on their MattyCollector.com website.
  • After the success of the Robot Chicken Star Wars episodes, Lucasfilm tapped Stoopid Monkey to produce Star Wars Detours, a CGI cartoon featuring various side stories, with a planned 2013 airdate. The series was apparently well in production, with footage being released online, before the Disney acquisition forced Lucasfilm to allocate its resources towards the sequel trilogy. 39 episodes were reportedly completed.
  • Preschool Daze, a Rugrats spin-off focusing on Suzie and Angelica at school, was put on hold after the success of the All Grown Up!, one shot special, led to a series. Only four shorts were produced (making up two full episodes) and put on the Rugrats "Tales from the Crib" DVDs. At this point, it's safe to say it's canceled.
  • In 2011, Mike Judge was supposed to be the producer of a new series for the MTV animation department called Worst Friends Forever, about three unpopular high school girls. Nothing more is known about it, since it was immediately canned.
  • In 2006, Disney announced two Winnie-the-Pooh installments for their Learning Adventures series: Good Day, Good Night and Time to Rhyme. Trailers popped up in various Disney DVDs at the time, featuring fully animated footage. Sadly, neither of them were released making this a rather baffling example.
  • Lauren Faust doesn't really care for a Milky Way and the Galaxy Girls series but she's been trying to pitch it for years as she knows toy companies prefer when toys have Merchandise-Driven cartoons. There's still no sign of a series or even an animated special after some 10+ years of trying. She tried to pitch Milky Way once and ended up creating My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic instead (and it shows, with several of the ponies being similar to Milky Way characters).
  • There have been talks of an Animated Adaptation of the book series Rainbow Magic for years, pretty much since the series started (the franchise was bought by HiT Entertainment presumably for this very reason). All that's come out of it was a one-off movie/OVA released around 2010, and nothing else seems planned.
  • There were apparently plans for an animated series of Barbie back in the late 80's, but all that materialized were 2 specials based on the Rockers line. Apparently DIC decided to make Maxie's World and/or Beverly Hills Teens instead.
  • A Johnny Test movie was announced around 2013, but the near-universal hatred of the franchise and the show's cancellation have apparently put the plans on ice.
  • The Canadian/Australian co-produced cartoon SheZow's production has stalled since mid 2013 and is most likely cancelled. The creator and some staff members have been trying to get it started up again as a graphic novel, but even that is going slowly.
  • The creator of Codename: Kids Next Door has been trying to get a sequel/spinoff series about Numbuh One's adventures in the Galactic Kids Next Door picked up for a while now, but its future doesn't look too bright.
  • Filly Funtasia was announced in 2013 but its release kept on being pushed back. It was due for a 2016 release that never happened, although slowly throughout the years, it's been revealed that the show is still in production.
  • Atomic Betty Redux was in the works for several years before a cancellation was announced. It was to be about Betty as a teenager. The idea was scrapped and they simply made more episodes of the series itself.
  • Halfway through its 7th episode, Polly And The Zhu Zhu Pets was put on hiatus and went through a supposed name change to The Zhu Zhus, along with the main character's name, Polly, being changed to Frankie.
  • A Captain America cartoon was scheduled to premiere on Fox Kids in the fall of 1998, but the bankruptcy of Marvel Comics meant it was not to be.
  • The planned Garbage Pail Kids Saturday Morning Cartoon, 13 episodes of which were actually made, was cancelled by CBS before it premiered in 1987.
  • Fox ordered Murder Police for 2013-2014, before abruptly cancelling it in October 2013.
  • In 2015 it was revealed that another adaptation of Astro Boy was being made, this time co-produced by a French studio. Nothing has been revealed since.

    Toys 
  • Robobuz was a toy, basically an Autobot bus with the the symbol removed, that had it's release continually delayed because the manufacturing partner didn't have any openings (reportedly the toy would start being manufactured after the factory's main business slowed down, which it never did).

    Transportation Infrastructure 
General Note: Transportation infrastructure is a very complicated business from an engineering standpoint, and also from an economics standpoint (since nobody can ever agree on the most likely economic impact of the new infrastructure) and from a political standpoint (since inevitably these things get people nearby riled up for or against them, with the pro-side usually saying something like "Jobs!" and the anti-side usually saying "Too Expensive!" and "Noise and Smell!"note ). As a result, infrastructure projects tend to get hit with this trope very easily.

  • U.S. Route 31 has slowly been in the process of conversion to freeway from South Bend, Indiana to just east of Benton Harbor, Michigan. A leg on the west side of Niles, Michigan was opened in 1992 as a divided highway without exits but later upgraded. The next-to-last stretch was completed in 2003, but halted just a couple miles shy of an obvious hookup into the existing I-94/I-196 exit, due to a creek in the freeway's path being the habitat for a rare species of butterfly. For over a decade now, plans have been bandied about to fill in that last gap.
  • The attempts to have a complete commuter rail system in Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas have been hampered with multiple delays, which can't be completely surprising since the two major cities have separate transit authorities; it now looks like it was a major miracle that the Trinity Railway Express connecting the two was even completed at all, let alone back in 2001. DART's Orange light rail line was originally supposed to be complete by December 2012; while most of it is operational, the final extension to DFW Airport was pushed back until 2014 (but was finished two months ahead of the new December '14 target date). The Cotton Belt corridor line connecting the airport to the northern suburbs now has a proposed implementation date of 2025 at the earliest. Meanwhile, The TEX commuter rail line to run through Fort Worth originally had a proposed completion date of 2012. It's currently been pushed all the way to 2017 - and that's just for the first half that will connect downtown to Grapevine and DFW Airport; the southern end running to the medical district and TCU has been put off indefinitely.
    • Another hurdle the cities have had to overcome is Arlington, which is believed to have long been the largest city in America with no public transit and whose citizens constantly vote down any transit plan. This is a huge problem for the Metroplex since Arlington sits in the middle and is one of the area's biggest tourist destinations, now being the home to the Dallas Cowboys in addition to the Texas Rangers baseball team and the Six Flags Over Texas theme park. The city has finally agreed to a two-year trial bus line connecting downtown Arlington and its entertainment district to the nearest Trinity Railway stop; service began in August 2013.
    • Another example in the Metroplex, State Highway 360. South of Interstate 20, the main road ends and the highway continues as frontage roads, complete with dummy entrance and exit ramps, continues until the Ellis County line at US Highway 287. Subsequent plans have included possibly making it a tollroad in order to finish completion, with the latest proposal up in the air as of 2013.
  • Sydney's second airport. Everyone agrees that the city badly needs one (since at least the 1980s, possibly earlier), but nobody's been able to find a good place for it, and the huge amount of costs would mean that the city might not even have one by 2020. (As of 2014, they've finally found a spot in Badgerys Creek.)
    • The North-West Rail Link, Epping to Cherrybrook to Congegong Road has been wanted since the 80's and is now being built, but will be finished by 2023.
  • There were several grandiose plans in the past to expand the New York City Subway to areas that do not have subway service, notably Staten Island and eastern Queens. Though discussion remains strong to develop some of these lines to alleviate existing subway capacity constraints and overcrowding (and provisions were built for future expansion), they never went past the drawing board for various reasons, including funding problems, not-in-my-backyard activism and changes in the overall economy. Aside from the infamous 2nd Avenue Line (which, until recently, was on the planning board since the 1920s before being finally open for service in 2017), some of these proposals included extensions of the Astoria, Fulton Steet, Flatbush, Archer Avenue, Queens Boulevard, Crosstown, Broadway, 6th Avenue, Concourse and Flushing Lines, extending the Rockaway Line to Queens Boulevard in Rego Park, a super-express bypass between Forest Hills and 21st Street-Queensbridge, new subway lines under Utica Avenue in Brooklyn to Sheepshead Bay (either from via Worth Street or from Crown Heights via the Eastern Parkway Line's express tracks), under Worth Street in Manhattan to the Rockaways (where it would connect the proposed Utica Avenue Line at South Fourth Street in Williamsburg, Brooklyn with the 8th Avenue Line's local tracks south of Canal Street), under the Long Island Expressway to Bayside (in Queens), under Fresh Pond Road to Maspeth (where it would connect with the Myrtle Avenue Line and provide thorough service to the Rockaways via the LIRR's disused Rockaway Branch; the Rockaways are now connected to the subway via the Fulton Street Line), under Lafayette Avenue to Throggs Neck (in the Bronx) and under Boston Post Road to Co-op City (also in the Bronx). They even had proposals to extend the 4th Avenue Line south of 95th Street in Brooklyn and have it connect to the Staten Island Railroad via the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge.
    • The Rockaways get special mention here: a proposal in 1929 had the LIRR's Rockaway Branch be connected from the Myrtle Avenue Line (via the 8th Avenue Line's Worth Street spur), while another in 1939 had it connect with both the Fulton Street and Queens Boulevard Lines (as bellmouths were built east of 63rd Drive for the proposed connection to the Rockaway Branch). It wasn't until 1956 that the Rockaways were finally connected to the subway via Fulton Street, while the city never filed any paperwork to abandon the section between Rego Park and Ozone Park. To this day, discussion remains strong to reactivate the abandoned right-of-way for passenger service.
    • The Queens Boulevard Line is another case: While its construction in the 1930s promoted housing growth along Queens Boulevard and stimulated the urbanization of central Queens, there are multiple provisions for spur routes along the route that were never built for various reasons:
      • The spur to the Rockaways east of 63rd Drive via the Rockaway Beach Branch.
      • Another spur to either Glendale or Maspeth from Jackson Heights.
      • Another spur east of Briarwood along the former Van Wyck Boulevard to South Ozone Park (which was later used for the Archer Avenue Line to Jamaica Center - and it was to be extended towards SE Queens).
      • An extension of the line beyond 179th Street to Bellerose.
      • Another spur east of Slattery Plaza to Kissena Boulevard via the Long Island Expressway (the Woodhaven Boulevard stop would be converted to an express station to reflect this change), with further provisions to Bayside.
      • A "super-express bypass" that would utilize the LIRR's Main Line to skip all stops between 36th Street and Forest Hills, to be used during rush hours.
    • The 2nd Avenue Line of the New York City Subway was first proposed way back in 1929 and became more pressing with the demolition of the 2nd and 3rd Avenue els that used to serve the East Side of Manhattan until the 1950's — currently, the nearest line that serves the area is the Lexington Avenue Line (the 4, 5, and 6 trains), which alone serves more passengers than the entire Washington Metro system (the second-busiest mass transit system in the US). City bond issues for the line were approved by voters twice (1951 and 1967note ) and construction finally began in 1972...right before the city became insolvent. The idea was finally put back on track in 2005 with another voter-approved bond issue, and the first segment from Lexington Avenue-63rd Street to 96th Street finally opened at the beginning of January 2017, as an extension of the Q train from the Broadway Line.
    • Staten Island does not have subway service, despite having its own rapid transit line. There have various attempts to have the Staten Island Railroad linked to the subway through a tunnel or via the Verrazano Bridge and connect it with the 4th Avenue Line south of 95th Street over the years, but they have been shot down like many of the other expansion proposals, including a lack of funding, political bickering and NIMBYism.
  • A similar story applies for the Roosevelt Boulevard Subway, a proposed extension/branch of Philadelphia's Broad Street Line. First proposed in 1913 and first seriously studied in the 1940s, they actually began tentative construction in 1967, and funding was approved for the project in the early 1970s...just before local opposition in Northeast Philadelphia (which would be served by the route) put the kibosh on it for reasons that had nothing to do with race riots. By the 1990s, support for the project picked up, but by that point, the money was gone, spent to build a (much-needed) tunnel connecting the city's three main commuter/intercity rail stations (30th Street, Suburban, and Market East) (and a station at Temple University). Today, there's talk of going through with it...if a plan to enhance bus service along the route indicates that a higher-capacity service would be used. (We should note that Uncle Sam already rates it as the highest potential ridership of any unbuilt transit line after the Second Avenue Line.)
  • Supposedly, the strategic plan for New York City's MTA accountant for the subway system's dire need to modernize, especially for accessibility purposes. The majority of subway stations in New York City aren't wheelchair accessible, but the issue seems to have taken a back seat to the construction of the Second Avenue Subway and the IRT Flushing Line extension, not to mention repairing the damage caused by Hurricane Sandy.
  • I-95 is the major highway along the East Coast of the United States, stretching from Miami all the way up through Maine to the Canadian border. Despite being one of the first routes of the Interstate Highway System planned and started when the Interstate was first proposed in the 50's, it is still not one continuous route long after most of the nationwide system was built by the 1980's. The original plan was to build a new highway through New Jersey to connect Philadelphia and New York City, but thanks to both freeway revolts (locals feared that the highway would bring unwanted development to area farmland) and opposition by the New Jersey Turnpike (what would you rather travel - a tolled road or a free one?note ), the proposed Somerset Freeway got canned. In 1995, due to increasing traffic along US 206 and New Jersey Route 31, this motivated officials in Mercer County to have New Jersey reconsider building the Somerset Freeway as a way to reduce congestion on local roads, but it was ruled out because of a hefty $700 million price tag. Also around this time, I-95 was extended east along I-295 between the site of the Somerset Freeway interchange and US 1 in Lawrence Township, while being extended down the New Jersey Turnpike (until Exit 6) and then west along the Pearl Harbor Memorial Extension to known as the Pennsylvania Turnpike Connector via the Delaware River–Turnpike Toll Bridge. The gap is currently being rectified by a new project in Pennsylvania, which is expected to finish in 2018.
  • The Berlin Brandenburg Airport, which is supposed to replace Berlin's two current international airports (Tegel and Schönefeld), has been in construction since 2006, and is suffering from a plethora of problems (most prominently the fire protection system) that led to exploding costs and the repeated delay of the opening date. As of now (2016), only tiny parts of the airport (such as the cargo center) have been opened. However, the S-Bahn station actually is open and sees somewhat regular train service (without passengers) to keep mold from growing.
  • The expansion of I-69 into a true Canada-to-Mexico corridor has been on the drawing board since the ratification of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) in 1994. It was supposed to have been completed around 2012. Planned segments in southern Indiana, Kentucky, Tennessee and Mississippi (planned to connect the existing northern I-69 route to I-69 in Texas) have been bogged down in political wrangling and budget woes since 2011.
    • Even before that, I-69 had a big gap for several miles on either side of Lansing, Michigan. From 1973 to 1992, a "Temporary I-69" designation was placed on a surface highway with intersections until the Interstate was finally completed.
  • Warsaw Metro rail system was envisioned as early as 1920s. Crisis, war and destruction of most of the city delayed construction until 1984 when first tunnels were dug. It wasn't until 1995 when first half (between city center and south) of the first line was finished (for those counting, that's around 2 meters a day). Stations further north were gradually built and opened until completion in 2008. Luckily, despite some delays, the second line is progressing quicker (started 2010, first stations to be opened in late 2014).
  • Currently, I-73 exists as a rather short intrastate highway (around 80 miles or so) connecting Greensboro and Biscoe, North Carolina. Plans to extend it southward to just north of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, seem to be ready to go, but northward to an undisclosed location (Roanoke, VA and Grayling, MI, the latter at US 127's terminus at I-75, being among the locations kicked about) has run into similar problems that I-69 faces.
  • New York City's largest train station, Penn Station, is currently a rather dreary underground complex beneath Madison Square Garden that feels more like an airport, especially when compared to Grand Central Terminal, which has been lovingly restored. As the Garden has been facing land-use difficulty and people have never really forgotten the demolition of the original Beaux-Arts Penn Station in 1963, there is currently an ungodly struggle between those who want to renovate the old James Farley Post Office next door and turn it into a new rail hub (to be named Moynihan Station after the great sociologist, diplomat, and Senator from New York Daniel Patrick Moynihan) and those who want MSG to pack up and go somewhere else with a new Penn Station to be rebuilt on the old site. A lack of money for either project has kept this tension bubbling along since at least 2000.
  • When the Las Vegas Monorail opened along the east side of the Vegas Strip in 2004, connecting several of the Strip's casino resorts, the original plans had it expanding to nearby McCarran International Airport and Downtown Vegas, but its ridership has never been enough to warrant such. The primary reason for this is that the stations are located at the far back of the resorts, many of them are sprawling, and none of the resorts on the other side of Las Vegas Boulevard are included, so most visitors find it quicker to walk from the entrances of one resort to another, especially resorts that aren't on the line. Even the hopes that it would ease the Strip's notorious traffic congestion failed to be fulfilled.
    • Interestingly, in the game Fallout: New Vegas, the monorail does go from downtown New Vegas to the airport. So apparently, they finished it some time before the nuclear apocalypse in 2077.
  • Washington, D.C.'s Dulles International Airport has three main buildings: the main terminal, housing ticketing, check-in, a number of other things, and the "Z" gates, and two long "midfield" terminal buildings parallel to the main one, the closer building housing Concourses A and B and the farther one housing Concourses C and D. The farther one is supposedly a "temporary" building (despite housing United Airlines, for which Dulles is a major hub)...and has been since it was built in 1983. They haven't even started accepting proposals for the design of the "permanent" building.
  • The Southeastern Parkway and Greenbelt, a proposed highway connecting the cities of Virginia Beach and Chesapeake in southeastern Virginia, was first proposed in 1985 as a means to alleviate traffic congestion along the interstates and surface roads in Southside Hampton Roads and provide a new inlet to Virginia Beach, which was then connected to the rest of the area only by State Road 44, a tolled highway. Since this point, it's been killed and re-proposed multiple times, with the two cities variously backing out to divert resources to other roadway projects inside their own borders. Hampton Roads' unified transportation authority has also roadblocked the proposed roadway at various points, and even when all three parties have finally settled in and jointly approved a plan to build the Southeastern Parkway, the Army Corps of Engineers, the Federal Highway Administration and/or the Environmental Protection Agency have jointly or individually killed every proposal.

    Most routes had the Virginia Beach end of the Parkway starting at the former SR-44, which was remarked as an extension of Interstate 264 at the Turn of the Millennium,note  just outside of Oceana Naval Air Station, and looping around to the south and west; the Chesapeake end, meanwhile, would have tied in at the junction of I-64, I-464 and VA-168,note  over-riding Dominion Boulevard, which was badged as VA-104 until around the same time as the 44-to-264 switchover, when Dominion was redesignated as US-17.note  The problem with any route connecting these two points is that all the land in between is either heavily developed or swamps, and with all the swampland that's already been torn out to build South Hampton Roads and the associated problems with flooding, the federal government has proven leery to approve any more such conversion. The last environmental study was terminated in 2010, at which point the local parties moved on to other projects, such as improvements to I-264 in Virginia Beach,note  some of which have reached the early construction phase while others have entered Development Hell due to issues with the suburban sprawl along the highway's length; investigating proposals for a new crossing over the James River between the Southside and Peninsula sections of Hampton Roads; and a conversion of US-17 south of I-64 to an elevated highway to alleviate both the traffic problems and massive flooding issues from the Elizabeth Rivernote .
  • Also from Eastern Virginia, the expansion of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel to four lanes. While the above-water portion of the roadway (the only direct link between the Eastern Shore and mainland Virginia, specifically northern Virgnia Beach)note  has been four lanes since construction of parallel bridge spans and subsequent rehabilitation of the orignal spans was finished in 1999, the addition of accompanying parallel tubes to the current two-lane tunnel sections (located underneath the Thimble Shoals and Chesapeake shipping channelsnote ) was indefintely postponed in 2005 over concerns about funding.note  In 2012, plans were finally put back on the books, and preliminary work began in summer 2017 - but only for the southern tunnel at Thimble Shoals; proposals for the northern tunnel at Chseapeake Channel will reportedly be considered in 2018 in hopes of beginning construction in 2022-23.
  • Any large scale intercity rail infrastructure in the US. Take California as an example. Back in the 1980s governor Jerry Brown (at the time one of the youngest in California history) had the wacky idea of building a High Speed Rail link from San Francisco to Los Angeles, just like France was doing at the time and Germany was getting ready to for their major cities. Ultimately nothing came of it before he left office, but numerous groups continued to push and lobby waiting for the right moment to get a ballot measure passed, which ultimately happened in 2008. Obama (at that time still with filibuster-proof majorities in both houses) proposed a federal high speed rail program and California was to be one of the beneficiaries. In 2015 governor Jerry Brown (in his fourth term, now one of the oldest in California history) could finally announce that construction would start and personally attended a groundbreaking ceremony. If all goes as planned, trains will be running as soon as the early 2020s - over part of the route.
  • The Verkehrsprojekte Deutsche Einheit or traffic projects of German unity. As the name indicates they were set up after reunification to reestablish severed connections between East and West and restore the deteriorated East German transit networks to a more modern state. While some of the projects are now finished, as of this writing (2016) several still aren't - and for some there is not even a tentative date for completion. One of the most important, a High Speed Rail link from Berlin to Nuremberg (and from there onwards to Munich) is still only half done. The Berlin-Leipzig section (200km/hnote ) opened in 2006. The Leipzig-Erfurt section (300 km/h) opened in December 2015 and the Nuremberg-Erfurt section (mostly 300km/h) is scheduled to open in December 2017. That's almost three decades after the need to build this ASAP was declared by the federal government.
  • The Leipzig City Tunnel - a rail tunnel under downtown Leipzig. Suffice to say that a first attempt to build it was interrupted by the First World War and ultimately Angela Merkel was a guest of honor at the grand opening.
  • The Channel Tunnel between England and France. According to historians, Napoleon Bonaparte discussed the topic with a British counterpart during (ultimately futile) peace negotiations and the topic came up in various forms throughout the 19th and 20th century. Construction ultimately started in late 1987 and the first trains in revenue service ran in 1994. While the tunnel (or rather the trains that run in it) now accounts for a larger chunk of the London-Paris travel market than all airlines combined, it is still perceived (particularly in Britain) as too expensive due to cost overruns and economic problems with the private company that was supposed to own operate and make a profit from the tunnel.
  • With all the transportation infrastructure getting stuck in development hell forever mentioned above, the few aversions stick out even more. Most French LGV (Lignes a Grande Vitesse, high speed lines) were built within a decade of their first conception. This is mostly because the TGV is incredibly popular in France and being against it is the political equivalent of running a campaign in the US in opposition to apple pie and firefighters. However, since the Turn of the Millennium and in The New '10s, some projects have gotten a certain run in with Not in My Backyard! types as well.
  • Rome's Metro system is pretty small. Construction of the third line, Line C, has progressed very slowly. This is in part because of the fact that said line has to go through areas where lots of archaeological discoveries are made, sometimes by the construction itself (which inevitably means construction has to be stopped until the scientists finish their digging).
  • There currently is an Interstate 74; it begins in Cinncinati, Ohio and runs to Iowa, just on the other side of the Mississippi River. Then there's the other Interstate 74 in North Carolina. Currently this highway consists of several disconnected segments, all of which are in the state:
    • One segment begins in a concurrency with Interstate 77 at the NC/Virginia border and ends south of Mount Airy at US 52.
    • Another segment begins at I-40 in Winston-Salem and ends in Ellerbe. (Incidentally, 74 spends much of this segment concurred with I-73, which, as seen above, is an example of this itself)
    • One segment in the southern part of the state running along US 74 between Rockingham and Lumberton.
    • The plan is to connect both sections of I-74 in some way (so the Interstate runs uninterrupted from Iowa to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina (where Interstate 73 also happens to be proposed to end), but political and budgetary difficulties mean that this will likely take a good long while, if it ever happens at all.
  • The Berlin U And S Bahn has a "200-Kilometer-Plan" dating back to the 1950s, that would make the U-Bahn a 200-km system. As of 2017, the system is just over 150 km long and obviously many elements of that plan still haven't been built. While some may never see the light of day, there are a few interesting cases, like an extension to Tegel Airport, which is now planned to be built once the airport shuts down to better connect the neighborhood that will be built on the grounds. Or they will just extend the tram which, at the time the 200 km plan was written, was in the process of being wound down in the West.

    Other 
  • The Grand Prix of America is a Formula One street race in New Jersey. Or it would be, if they could actually get the permanent parts of the course built. It was first announced in 2011 for a spot on the 2013 F1 schedule, only to be pushed back to 2014 after the clearances weren't secured in time. Then it missed the 2014 date due to financial difficulties. In late 2013, F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone publicly claimed the race's backers are in breach of contract due to the repeated delays, and that the slot is now open to any group who can put together enough money to finish the course. The backers have since slammed Ecclestone and claimed he's deliberately trying to sabotage their efforts. As of July 2014, Ecclestone has indicated that, regardless of who finishes the course, the earliest it could be added is 2016 due to an agreement with some of the bigger teams not to exceed 20 races in a season, and even then he doubted anyone could get it done by that date. Come late 2015, and the final F1 calendar for 2016 did not feature the Grand Prix of America despite actually expanding to 21 races.note  As of January 2016, it's unclear whether anyone is still seriously working on it.
    • Subverted with the revival of the United States Grand Prix, which was almost canceled due to a brief contract dispute between Ecclestone and the builders of the Circuit of the Americas, but ultimately went off on its originally scheduled date at the end of the 2012 season.
  • The Westfield Shopping Center in Bradford, UK. Originally planned in 1998 to spruce up the cities fairly unpleasant shopping area, it finally got approval in 2003. Buildings in the area were completely demolished by 2006 and dug out. A number of shops closed up to prepare to move into the new building. After Westfield decided to focus on other projects the city was left with an enormous demolished pit (referred to locally as 'The Hole') until 2010 when a small section of the site was turned into a park. As a result an entire chunk of the city was basically abandoned, with nearby shops closing up due to lack of people visiting the area. Construction finally got underway in 2014.
  • The Boeing 787 Dreamliner. Rolled out in July 2007, the plans were for flights to begin in 2009, with stretched versions coming out within two to three years. Then technically difficulties and parts delays meant the aircraft didn't make its first flight until December 2009. It wasn't until July 2011 that the 787-8 finally entered passenger service with All Nippon Airways. Then in December 2012, the aircraft was grounded worldwide due to problems with lithium ion batteries catching fire on a few aircraft, including a Japan Airlines 787 at Logan International Airport and at least one pop-the-evacuation-slides emergency landing at Tokyo Haneda Airport by an ANA Dreamliner. Fortunately, once the problems with the base 787-8 model were resolved, production of the longer 787-9 was much faster, as it took its first flight in September 2013 and within a year,, United Airlines, ANA and Air New Zealand had pressed their first -9s into regular service.
  • Neon Alley. In Canada. Need I say more?note  In 2016, Viz Media brought some of its series to Canadian streamers through Tubi TV.
  • Elsa's and Anna's inclusion into the Disney Princess line has become this. It was announced in 2013 but as of 2015 it has yet to occur. Their merchandise often has the "Disney Princess" label on it but they're officially not under the line yet. Many fans believe that Disney realized what a Cash Cow Franchise Frozen merchandise is and decided to postpone it until it loses popularity.
  • The transition from IPv4 to IPv6 has been proceeding slowly, even though IPv4 addresses have been exhausted. Modern operating systems and networking equipment have supported IPv6 since the 2000s but ISPs have been slow to roll out IPv6 because of a combination of the expense of upgrading and NAT reducing the demand for new IP addresses. Most ISPs implement dual-stack configurations that support both IPv6 and IPv4 for backward compatibility.
  • The SpaceX "Falcon Heavy." First announced in 2005, was supposed to have its first launch by around 2010, but has been delayed and re-announced so many times that it has gained a reputation for being perpetually 6 months away. The main problem is that it's basically three Falcon 9 rockets cobbled together, so every time the 9 is redesigned (once or twice a year), the Heavy also has to be redesigned, pushing back its completion by several more months. When or if it will actually make its debut remains to be seen.

This page will be finished, any year now. We are getting in a new editor and reformatting much of the page in 3D.

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