Chris Nolan Wants to Direct a Howard Hughes Biopic After 'TDKR'?
More unexpected news today. Vulture, who often has trustworthy scoops, is reporting that Christopher Nolan is already talking about lining up a project following The Dark Knight Rises. As if anyone wants to know (kidding), Nolan is apparently looking at directing another Howard Hughes biopic, following The Aviator of '04. However, this will focus more "on the freakier decades of Hughes remarkably secretive and OCD-addled life" than the earlier piece we saw. This is the first we've heard about it so take it as a rumor for now, but I'll be damned if it isn't an intriguing concept. Nolan doing Hughes? Brilliance in the making.
Vulture seems to have a lot of info on this prospective project, saying that "Nolan wants to shoot his Hughes movie late in 2012, then release it in 2014 — by which time 10 years will have elapsed since Scorsese's Aviator, a span Nolan seems to think sufficient enough for it not to invite immediate comparison." You see, Nolan has been developing this since before Aviator and dropped it when Scorsese beat them to it, but now he's back (because he can pretty much do whatever he wants nowadays). Nolan will apparently be working from Michael Drosnin's book Citizen Hughes: The Power, the Money and the Madness, first published in 1985. Here's how Vulture describes the Howard Hughes we'll see (it's too good to not put in its entirety):
"We'll meet the Howard Hughes who spent much of 1948 sitting naked in a bungalow at the Beverly Hills Hotel with only a pink dinner napkin covering his genitals as he screened movies from his studio, RKO Pictures, and ran up an $11 million tab; the Hughes who — obsessed with food safety — once bought every franchise restaurant chain in his home state of Texas, and who was similarly so concerned about air quality that he installed an aircraft filtration system in his 1954 Chrysler New Yorker, taking up its entire trunk; the Howard Hughes who had his hair cut and nails trimmed only once a year, and who was seemingly as addicted to Baskin Robbins Banana Ripple ice cream as he was to regular codeine injections; the Hughes who at the end of his life considered only Mormons trustworthy enough to be let into his inner circle."
And we're letting Christopher Nolan adapt this madness into something brilliant? I'm in. There's not much more they, or we, know about this besides that broad setup of the later Howard Hughes story, but this is an intriguing concept, mostly because I've been wondering where Nolan would head next after mesmerizing us with his multi-layered dream world last year and (most likely) blowing our minds again in one final Batman showdown come 2012. Will he really be stepping back and going for a biopic about a crazed mastermind? Only time will tell. Obviously if anyone asks him, he's going to stick with business and say he's barely started worked on TDKR, but it sounds like there's a plan being put into place for him to follow that up with a little Howard Hughes. And it could be amazing. What do you think? Good topic for Nolan to tackle next?
One of our friends on twitter just pointed out an interesting Nolan quote from IMDB: "Following Insomnia, his next project was going to be a Howard Hughes biopic starring Jim Carrey. Nolan had the screenplay written (calling it 'one of the best things I've ever written')" but he never made it thanks to The Aviator. It definitely looks like this exists, it's just a matter of if Nolan really is planning to do this next after TDKR.