Will Smith Producing Biopic on Explorer Dr. S. Allen Counter
by Ethan Anderton
July 14, 2010
Though the spotlight will be shining bright on Will Smith when he returns to the big screen with Men in Black 3, that doesn't mean Smith isn't busy behind the scenes with his own production company Overbrook Entertainment. As a matter of fact, following up his role as producer on his son's breakout movie The Karate Kid, Variety reports that Smith is developing a biopic of Dr. S. Allen Counter, a modern-day explorer and African-American neuroscience professor. While it seems like this could be a good opportunity for Smith to stretch his dramatic acting muscles again, he's only attached as a producer. No director is attached either.
Counter is currently director of the Harvard Foundation of Harvard University and professor of neurology at Harvard Medical School, but previously he's led research on various indigenous peoples. He's even produced a documentary on the culture and history of indigenous rain forest people in Surinam called I Shall Moulder Before I Shall Be Taken. In addition he has researched other people in the Andes in 1993, producing another documentary called Lost Africans in the Andes. In Greenland, he found the sons of North Pole co-discoverer Robert E. Peary and helped raise money to reunite them with their families in the United States.
The man's life is certainly rife with plenty of cinematic potential and Will Smith could certainly do the story justice both behind and in front of the camera. However, the guy is an international superstar and with no less than 30 projects in development, there's no telling how soon he'll get to this project or if he'd even have time to step into Dr. S. Allen Counter's shoes on the big screen. Stay tuned as this project and many more from Will Smith continue to develop. Farhad Safinia, of Apocalypto previously, is writing the screenplay.