Edward Zwick Goes to the beach

Posted on 03 March 2009 by ShepRamsey

Defiance and Blood Diamond director Edward Zwick is helming a great big movie about a really mean sperm whale for his next project. Somehow I knew it would come to this.

moby_dickAccording to Variety, the film titled In the Heart of the Sea, set in 1820, is the true story of a whaling ship which was hunted down and destroyed by an angry sperm whale. The crew was stranded, with little hope of survival, and ultimately only eight were rescued. I feel like I just ruined the whole movie.

Zwick wrote the script with his Last Samurai co-writer Marshall Herskovitz and production should begin late this year, probably occupying the same set Peter Weir used for Master and Commander. I guess we should probably expect the movie to be released sometime around Oscar season 2010.                           

Categorized | News

3 Comments For This Post

  1. HansKlopek Says:

    Edward Zwick could really shine with this material. With Legends of the Fall, Glory, and Courage Under Fire, he proved himself a master of lush landscapes and grand literary themes. The Last Samurai was a great example of this as well, with Zwick adopting a very restrained, meditative tone (not Terrence Malick meditative; few directors have that much patience) for a story that could have so easily been Defiance. Oh, I mentioned the D-word.

    Yes, Defiance and Blood Diamond were both sub-par, but when Zwick just tries to tell a story and stays away from being a cause-head, he is generally okay. I for one am looking forward to this one, though I kind of wish he would have just bit the bullet and adapted Moby Dick.

    I’m a little surprised Peter Weir didn’t go after this material though. After years of cold shouldering it, I’ve finally warmed up to Master and Commander and can actually bring myself to say the words “it’s well made.” A little bit at a time, now. Just a bit.

  2. ShepRamsey Says:

    I don’t much care for the few films of Zwick’s that I’ve seen and doubt that I would care much for his other stuff. Aside from the fact that long-winded historical films aren’t usually my favorite genre, the only vibe I ever seem to get from him is about 99% Oscar-pandering and 1% honest-to-god passion.

    Malick is a great example of a director who has real passion and attention to detail. He’s a true artist and his films are fascinating and layered. I think he would do some great stuff with this kind of material, but more than that, Werner Herzog seems like a terrific choice. He’s already made a pretty engrossing survival story with the more mainstream “Rescue Dawn,” but this particular story has that terrific oddball man-vs-nature quality to it that Herzog illustrates so well in films like “Fitzcarraldo” and “Grizzly Man,” which was more man-vs-man-then-turns-to-nature-and-gets-eaten-by-nature.

    Herzog would be amazing for this. Personally, I hear Zwick’s name and I just expect to be overwhelmed by convention to the point of boredom.

  3. HansKlopek Says:

    If you mean passion for watching paint dry, then Malick definitely likes to move at that pace. I haven’t seen Days of Heaven, but I hated The New World and wasn’t nuts about The Thin Red Line. Badlands had a lot of great themes and character stuff moving through it, and its beautifully shot, but I thought there was something ultimately amiss about it. Probably in the matter-of-fact way that it went about its killing spree. Can’t really remember though. Need to re-watch it.

    Zwick is Oscar pandering to some extent, but he has the goods. Like I said, Blood Diamond and Defiance are both weak, but I think Samurai had the stuff of great David Lean-style epics. There are few directors that understand how to make a big, period story have a sweep to it, a way of transporting the viewer into a previous world. If you look at Samurai and Legends of the Fall, he definitely has that. That’s one of things that I like the most about his movies.

    After watching Encounters, I would like to see Werner take on a really big story like this one. It would be really interesting to see him try to tell a story of a really famous obsessive character. He is one of the best at depicting those type of people and I’d really like to see him take that passion to big budget film just to see what he can do with it.

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