Ferrara talks Jekyll and Hyde and Last Day on Earth
Abel Ferrara's version of Jekyll and Hyde was one that sounded interesting, Forest Whitaker as Dr. Jekyll and 50 Cent as Mr Hyde, the “monster”, but it seems that it's dead due to the studio system and Ferrara isn't going to be making it.
Good news though is that another of his projects, The Last Day on Earth, is moving forward and it sounds pretty huge in scope.
His version of Jekyll and Hyde is dead it seems. Originally it was set to star the excellent Forest Whitaker as Dr. Jekyll and 50 Cent as Mr Hyde, something that Abel Ferrara seemed excited about as he said:
”He could be an awesome Ed Hyde. He's the real deal.”
He was speaking to The Guardian through AITH about the film and although the line-up sounded interesting, Forest Whitaker left the project a little while ago and now Ferrara tells us that it's not happening, quite plainly:
”...it's not gonna get made...Warner Brothers have put up about one fifth of what the film should cost and want about one third of what it's gonna make, and I'm supposed to kiss the feet of whoever made that deal.”
Youch, I know what I'd tell them, “Yes, I'll do it right away”, but then Ferrara has an exciting and largely uncompromised career behind him, so why would he take a deal like that and not be able to make the film he wanted to? Particularly as he has some very strong views about the story:
”They never made Jekyll & Hyde the way it was written. It's a guy and his creation. Having one actor play both parts is an abomination, a distortion of Stevenson's story...It's a masterpiece. I'm gonna make it one day.”
That's fair enough, although I don't agree it's an abomination if they have the same actor, it does depend on the script and how good the actor is, see Jekyll, the BBC television series written by the hugely talented Steven Moffat and the equally talented directors Matt Lipsey and Douglas Mackinnon.
So it's not going to get made. Well, at least not right now, we all know that playing hard ball can often turn these deals around so perhaps in the future it'll come back to him.
He has some strong views about the compromising of the story against the financials, and you have to respect the man for that.
”The minute you have to raise one dollar, you're in a world of shit, a world of compromise...But I'm never gonna get to a point in my life where what it costs to shoot a movie is going to determine what it is. The limits of my imagination is the only thing that's gonna stop me.”
That's a damn good thing for him to say about his films, and that should mean we won't see his Jekyll and Hyde until it's the film he wants to make, no compromise, even over cash.
The Last Day on Earth though could well face the same problems, it's in the early days as yet but it promises and even bigger scope and potentially as many problems. There's not much known about it but he dies say that it's what would happen if everyone knew the world was ending, and that sounds like he'll need a fair amount of money to get it made.
Will we get to see it, or will it go the same way as Jekyll and Hyde?