Social networking sites around the Interwebs just about suffered a meltdown last night as word got out that Al Queda leader Osama Bin Laden - the purported mastermind behind numerous terrorist acts, including the World Trade Center bombings on September 11th, 2001 - had at last been hunted down and killed by U.S. military forces.
Oscar-winning filmmaker Kathryn Bigelow has been actively developing a movie tentatively titled Kill Bin Laden, so news of the infamous terrorist's death is sheer lucky coincidence; however, chances are good that the based-on-a-true story project will be fast-tracked and put into production very soon, given recent events.
Deadline says that Bigelow has been handling pre-production duties and prepping to start casting her Bin Laden project for weeks now, in collaboration with Mark Boal - the screenwriter behind her Oscar-winning war thriller, The Hurt Locker. Megan Ellison (True Grit) is reportedly all but set to fund the pic, which at this point will definitely be viewed as a priority over other in-development Bigelow projects like Triple Frontier.
Joel Edgerton (Smokin' Aces) is reportedly in line to play the leading man in Bigelow's Bin Laden flick - or was, as of last Friday. The actor has recently been shortlisted as a prospect to star in upcoming tentpole pics like Snow White and the Huntsman and The Bourne Legacy - the latter of which looks to instead feature Hurt Locker leading man Jeremy Renner, coincidentally enough.
Bigelow's Bin Laden film is said to be based on a real-life mission carried out some years ago (after 9/11) by military forces, to hunt down and kill the infamous Al Queda leader back when he was reportedly hiding in the mountainous border region between Pakistan and Afghanistan. Chances are good that the film won't be changed drastically, since Bigelow informed Deadline that "this movie isn't specifically about [Bin Laden]"; however, it's all but guaranteed to note his death, via an epilogue of sorts.
If there's one area in which Bigelow thrives, it's directing intense thrillers - be they gritty and authentic war dramas like The Hurt Locker or a (goofy, but fun) high-octane heist flick like Point Break. The prospect of her helming a project that revolves around some pretty attention-grabbing subject matter was surely enticing enough to studio heads when it was first announced. Now, however, you can guarantee they'll be clamoring for Bigelow to get going on her new film.
Look to hear more about Bigelow's new project - including information about when it's expected to hit theaters and what the official title will be - in the near future.