Robert Zemeckis has signed on to direct a new film for Universal Pictures, which appears to squash the rumor that the Oscar winner was in talks to helm the The Flash. Zemeckis without question remains one of the most visually gifted directors in Hollywood today. He brought Michael J. Fox Back to the Future for three films in a souped-up DeLorean, and placed the ordinary Forrest Gump (Tom Hanks) in the most extraordinary of situations in the 1994 Best Picture Oscar winner.
Zemeckis is also a master of filming motion capture (The Polar Express), and after he had Denzel Washington pilot an inverted jetliner in Flight, he painstakingly recreated the World Trade Center for Philippe Petit’s (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) death-defying high-wire act between the Twin Towers in The Walk.
Because of his limitless vision, it seemed to make a lot of sense when a rumor claimed Zemeckis was in talks to direct Warner Bros’ The Flash, which promises to be a visual effects-heavy DCEU movie. But while “in talks” reports often times pan out to done deals, The Wrap reporter Umberto Gonzalez immediately countered the rumor to say that Zemeckis merely took a meeting about the film, and that other directors were still vying for the job.
Now, an announcement by Universal Pictures seems to solidify Gonzalez’s tweet, as the studio unveiled plans for what is known at the time being as Untitled Robert Zemeckis Project, which is set to hit theaters November 21, 2018. The film’s official description of the story reads:
“Academy Award-winning filmmaker Robert Zemeckis (Forrest Gump, Flight, Cast Away) directs Steve Carell in the moving true story of one broken man’s fight as he discovers how artistic imagination can restore the human spirit.”
Zemeckis’ untitled film is based on the 2010 documentary Marwencol, which the director has been attached to since 2013. According to Variety, Carell signed on to star in the film in 2015. In the Universal announcement released Friday, Zemeckis was credited with writing the screenplay for the film with Caroline Thompson, whose writing credits include Edward Scissorhands and Corpse Bride for Tim Burton. Jeff Malmberg, who directed Marwencol, is listed as one of the executive producers on Zemeckis’ film.
Since Zemeckis’ untitled film is set for a November 2018, release, it will all but crush fans’ hopes that the director will be involved in any way with The Flash. There’s no question the Ezra Miller star vehicle has had a tough time keeping a director, as both Seth Grahame-Smith and Rick Famuyiwa departed the project last year due to creative differences. With the release date of The Flash still in flux, Warner Bros. should have ample time to lock in secure a new helmer, and not be forced to make a hire in a flash – and potentially make a huge mistake – to meet deadlines.
Source: Universal, Variety