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Michael Mann mulls over possibilities for his next feature film

10.26.2010

Filmmaker Michael Mann (PUBLIC ENEMIES, HEAT) has been hard at work on HBO's upcoming Los Angeles-based horse racing drama "Luck", the pilot episode of which he directed. But what's the director got in mind for when he goes back to the silver screen? In an extensive interview with the Financial Times, Mann revealed information about three projects...

First, something we've already talked about: The story of Robert Capa, the war photographer, who along with Henri Cartier-Bresson, founded Magnum Photos. British playwright Jez Butterworth is writing the script. Here's Mann per the Times:

"It's about a tumultuous love affair Capa has with Gerda Taro," Mann explains. Born Endre Friedmann, Capa was a Hungarian who came to Paris. "He and Gerda invented a different persona, that he was a romantic American photojournalist. They meet in Paris as refugees – despised and alone in a period of European history which is a cascade of conflicts."

Second, Mann's got his eye on an epic medieval tale set in 15th-century Europe about the build-up to the battle of Agincourt between England and France. According to the Times, the inspiration for the film came when Mann went to Paris to visit the gothic La Sainte-Chapelle.

"We went to see it and it blew me away. From that, it becomes: 'Can I locate myself, an audience, in a medieval perspective?'"

Finally, a return to gangsters and his hometown of Chicago is also in the cards, as Mann is developing a mafia story entitled BIG TUNA. The story follows Tony Accardo, boss of the Chicago Outfit crime organization, as well as the younger man who succeeded Accardo, Sam Giancana.

"Here’s an older man who was the undisputed boss at a time when the Chicago outfit was the most powerful crime element in America. It becomes a classic tragedy of megalomania and hubris."

While I wouldn't be against Mann taking another dip in the gangster pool (genre is, afterall, just a template for exploring all manner of ideas and themes, so I don't necessarily think it would be retreading), I'd much rather he jump into something new. The idea of either a medieval epic (imagine that) or a thoughtful character drama is just so much more enticing.
Extra Tidbit: Michael Mann is one of my top five favorite filmmakers (THE INSIDER being my numero uno of his).
Source: Financial Times

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