UPDATE #2: According to LA Times, this story is false and Kathryn Bigelow – as well as producers Frank Marshall and Kathleen Kennedy – are NOT attached to direct and produce an adaptation of this story. A spokeswoman told MTV News – “This report is innacurate. There is no movie deal… There is no deal and no one is attached to the project.” Now either that’s LA Times not wanting the details to get out as soon as they have and they’re doing some sort of damage control, or what they’re saying is true and the news reported previously is entirely false. Stay tuned for any updates on this.
Kathryn Bigelow is a director that doesn’t make movies all that often, with Point Break probably being her most celebrated film (at least by the average movie fan). But this year she smashed back onto the movie scene with The Hurt Locker, a powerful and gripping Iraq War film that has already been talked about as a serious Oscar contender, both in the Best Picture category and a Best Director nod for Bigelow herself.
With her critical success helming a movie about war in the Middle East, it’s little surprise to hear that she’s revisiting the region for a future project. Production Weekly tweeted yesterday that Bigelow will direct Held By The Taliban, a project based on a set of NY Times articles written by David Rohdes.
The articles were written last October and detail Rohdes’ almost seven and a half month captivity by the Taliban. He was kidnapped in the Summer of 2008 while in the middle of writing a book on the Southern part of Afghanistan. Rohdes and two of his colleagues were taken to a tribal region in North Pakistan, which is an area where Osama Bin Laden is thought to be hiding out. Amazingly, Rohdes and his colleagues escaped and made their way to freedom. Just imagine what the director of The Hurt Locker could do with that sort of drama…
Update #1: The Hollywood Reporter reports that Stephen Belber (Management) is attached to write the screenplay based on Rohdes’ NY Times articles. Also, Frank Marshall (Indiana Jones quadrilogy) will produce the pic alongside Kathleen Kennedy (Schindler’s List), in a packet that went out to, “certain studios.”
I’d like to see Bigelow reunite with Hurt Locker writer Mark Boal for the project. They’ve proven they can make a powerful and affecting film out of these sort of events before, so why not repeat that success? Collider reminds us that Bigelow also has another upcoming project called Triple Frontier, which will in fact re-team her with Boal. That project is listed as coming in 2011, so we may see Bigelow work on that first before moving on to Held By The Taliban.
I’m interested to see what Bigelow does next, no matter what it is. She made one heck of a movie with The Hurt Locker – arguably the greatest Iraq War to date (I was let down upon first viewing because of all the hype, but after re-watching it my opinion raised substantially). If she keeps making movies of that caliber (and I have no doubt she will), then I see no reason why she should change genres anytime soon. Do you?
The Hurt Locker is now available on DVD and Blu-ray. See it if you haven’t.
No word on when Held By The Taliban is aiming to be in theaters.
Sources: Production Weekly, Collider and THR