There are two films in development right now that are hurting my brain in their fight for the title of Worst Possible Idea. So I’m going to put it to you, gentle judgy readers, to declare a winner.
Project 1: Michael Bay and Leonardo DiCaprio’s Rwandan Cycling movie
What It Is: The true story of Jacques “Jock” Boyer, the first American cyclist to race in the Tour de France. Boyer was a “Bible-reading Seventh-Day Adventist who ate only nuts and berries.” After a bad business deal and an affair with a teenager “found redemption” in 1990s Rwanda.
He took a disparate group of Rwandans, boys who had survived butchering and abject poverty and who fought with their fists to fend off occasional bike thieves, and forged them into Team Rwanda, taking them to races around the globe. One of the members, a young man who lost six brothers in the genocide, Adrien Niyonshuti, made it to the 2012 London Olympics, competing in mountain bike cross-country.
The Argument For: The best I can say for this is that Michael Bay isn’t directing and DiCaprio isn’t acting. They’re both producing and the director in talks is Orlando von Einsiedel, who directed Virunga, an Oscar-nominated documentary about a group fighting to protect gorillas in the Congo.
The Argument Against: A white American redemption story with an Africa backdrop, backed by two of the sleaziest men in Hollywood? Bully.
Project #2: Doug Ellin’s Harriet Tubman biopic
What It Is: A Harriet Tubman biopic starring Viola Davis, from the creator of Entourage.
The Argument For: I’d totally be down to see Viola Davis play Harriet Tubman. We all would, right? That’s a movie that should exist right now.
The Argument Against: