On Halloween, Microsoft and award-winning filmmaker Peter Jackson announced some horrifying news for video game fans: They're delaying the production of the long-awaited "Halo" movie until an unspecified time in the future. The movie was previously set for a summer 2008 release.

"At this time, Microsoft, Peter Jackson, and Fran Walsh have mutually agreed to postpone making a feature film based on the 'Halo' video game," Microsoft said in a written statement issued late Tuesday. "While it will undoubtedly take a little longer for 'Halo' to reach the big screen, we are confident that the final feature film will be well worth the wait."

Universal Studios and 20th Century Fox were originally going to back "Halo", but both movie studios pulled out of the project after an aborted attempt to rejigger the finances at the last minute. At the time, Microsoft said it would seek alternative financing, but one might assume that the company's efforts have been fruitless.

"Halo" fans are accustomed to long waits: The original "Halo" game was released on the PC, Xbox, and Macintosh systems, but its first sequel--"Halo 2"--shipped for only the Xbox back in 2004. However, Microsoft plans to belatedly ship a Windows-compatible version sometime in 2007. The eagerly anticipated "Halo 3" will ship for only the Xbox 360, supposedly in 2007 as well.