A few projects were discussed as contenders over the last few months, from The Man of Steel to a remake of MGM’s The Wizard of Oz that would have stuck very closely to the existing film, and even another time-travel story, Replay. Finally, however, Zemeckis appears to have chosen what movie it is he’s going to leap into, and it’s drama about an air disaster – or, at least, a near disaster.
According to 24 Frames, Zemeckis will start production this Autumn on Flight. Here’s how they pitch it:
…about a pilot who rescues his passengers from a dangerous situation but who turns out not to be as heroic as he appears — he’s an addict whose negligence was partly responsible for the danger in the first place.
Denzel Washington is negotiating his deal to take the lead role of pilot Whip Whittaker now.
The film’s screenplay is by John Gatins, who also wrote the upcoming rob-boxing yarn, Real Steel. There’s still time for Zemeckis to bring in another writer, or to have Gatins do another draft, though, and as the project is described as “in development” by 24 Frames’ source, I’d say the changes could be quite substantial.
I don’t want to spoil anything, but the original script’s concept for the disaster sequence is really quite jaw dropping, unexpected and imaginative, and I’m sure that it will be must-see stuff once Zemeckis has visualised it for us. At the same time, he’s a great director of character drama too. Perfect man for the job.