In January 2012, shooting was set to begin in Sydney, Australia, on the Hollywood-backed production of Milton's Paradise Lost, with Oscar minee Bradley Cooper cast as Satan. Yet just two weeks before the start of production, Legendary Pictures delayed the project, reportedly due to budgetary concerns, and soon the company had suspended the film indefinitely. Milton scholar Eric C. Brown, who was then serving as a script consultant for the studio, sees his experience with that project as part of a long and perplexing story of Milton on film. Indeed, as Brown details in this comprehensive study, Milton's place in the popular imagination -- and his extensive influence upon the cinema, in particular -- has been both pervasive and persistent.
Eric C. Brown is professor of English at the University of Maine at Farmington. He has been a visiting professor at Harvard University, where he was also a postdoctoral fellow in Renaissance studies, and at the UniversitA(c) du Maine in Le Mans, France. He spent a year as a Fulbright scholar at the University of Bergen, Norway and has published extensively on such figures as Shakespeare, Milton, Spenser, Sidney, Donne, and Marlowe. He is editor of Insect Poetics, an interdisciplinary collection that theorizes insects in a variety of texts and contexts, and coeditor of Shakespeare in Performance.