Competing Bowe Bergdahl films coming from Kathryn Bigelow and Todd Field
Controversial topics always make for intriguing feature films and the story of Bowe Bergdahl will be no exception. Competing film projects about the ordeal of the American military officer embroiled in one of the most debated news stories of the year. Normally, projects like this do not garner too much attention until filmmakers are involved and in this case we have two very talented directors in the running: Kathryn Bigelow and Todd Field.
Bigelow won the Oscar for directing THE HURT LOCKER and courted controversy with the Seal Team Six/Osama bin Laden film ZERO DARK THIRTY. Bigelow has reported been working with ZERO DARK THIRTY scribe Mark Boal for years as the Bergdahl story has been developing but it is unknown what the theme of the story will be. Todd Field, director of IN THE BEDROOM and LITTLE CHILDREN, is considering adapting Michael Hasting's book "America's Last Prisoner of War" which was published prior to the recent controversy surrounding the release of Bergdahl.
For those unfamiliar with the story, here is a quick rundown courtesy of Deadline.
An idealistic young man who was home schooled by his religious parents in Idaho, Bergdahl tried to join the French Foreign Legion and spent time at a Buddhist monastery before joining the Army. Not long after being deployed in Afghanistan, he became disillusioned with the bureaucracy and what he saw as incompetence of those around him. He reportedly left the base, wandering around until he was captured by the Taliban. He spent five years as the lone U.S. soldier in captivity, until he was traded for five Taliban higher-ups held at Guantanamo Bay. Some military men have charged he was a deserter and should not have been swapped for five dangerous Taliban operatives. On Capitol Hill, McCain has been among the chorus of pols excoriating the secret deal negotiated by the White House. The drama is still unfolding as the freed soldier attempts to reintegrate into society.
Between Field and Bigelow, Bigelow definitely already has the experience with military films while Field is a much more artistic filmmaker. Both could make very unique movies about this true story in very unique ways. Here's hoping we get to see both come to fruition.