The last attempt at a movie deal - to be co-produced by 20th Century Fox and Universal Studios - fell apart because Microsoft's terms included almost entire creative control and presented far less risk to Microsoft than for the Hollywood studios. If I recall correctly, there was also concern over Neil Blomkamp as a first-time director on a big budget project, even with Peter Jackson attached as producer.
Just because we
think a live-action movie would be a sure-fire financial success doesn't mean that the studios that would be involved in producing the project wouldn't think differently, especially since they have plenty of data to look at that we wouldn't have access to. That said, I do think a movie is inevitable and I wouldn't be surprised if Forward Unto Dawn
- with its $10 million budget - represents not just promotion for Halo 4
but Microsoft testing the waters for a theatrical film produced outside the studio system by 343 Industries directly.
"We're either the best-funded Web series of all time, a sort of mid-road healthy TV pilot, or a super-low budget movie," director Stewart Hendler said in an interview.