Kathryn Bigelow to direct crime drama set during the 1967 Detroit riots
It's been a few years since we last witnessed a Kathryn Bigelow film, and although she's had several potential projects in the pipeline since the release of ZERO DARK THIRTY, it appears that Bigelow is pushing them aside to re-team with her ZERO DARK THIRTY and THE HURT LOCKER screenwriter Mark Boal. Details about the film, which is being referred to as the "Untitled Detroit Project," aren't being revealed quite yet, but the film will be a crime drama set against the backdrop of the 1967 Detroit riots.
The riots kicked off following a police raid on an unlicensed bar and unfortunately led to five days of rioting which prompted Governor George W. Romney to order the Michigan Army National Guard into Detroit as well President Lyndon B. Johnson sending in the 82nd and 101st Airborne Divisions. The end result was over forty deaths and thousands of injuries, arrests, and destroyed buildings. Mark Boal has been researching the riots for over a year in preparation for the film which will kick off principal photography this summer. Prior to this announcement, it was expected that Bigelow and Boal's next collaboration would have been a film about Bowe Bergdahl, the U.S. Army soldier who was held captive in Afghanistan from 2009 until his release in 2014. That film has been pushed back until Bergdahl’s court martial trial has been resolved; Mark Boal spoke to Deadline:
Nobody in Washington predicted that Bowe’s journey would take so many twists and turns and would continue to be unresolved, I certainly didn’t see it coming and I was working on this other story at the same time. It’s also a very timely tale that deals with systemic racism in a way I think is relevant to contemporary audiences. It felt like the right thing to do to go ahead with the Detroit project, which was finished, and tell that story now. We will circle back to Bergdahl when the military proceedings are resolved.
Kathryn Bigelow's UNTITLED DETROIT PROJECT doesn't have a release date at the moment, but it's expected to debut in 2017, the 50th anniversary of the Detroit riots.