Hollywood's 'Black List' of best unproduced scripts of 2010 revealed
Wizards, zombies and Jackie Kennedy star on list of finest films you didn't see this year
Fancy catching a taut drama about Jackie Kennedy's fight to preserve JFK's legacy in the seven days immediately following his death? Or perhaps a romantic comedy with the legendary title: Your Bridesmaid is a Bitch? Both stories could well find their names into cinemas, along with another 74, after making it on to the 2010 "Black List" of the best unproduced screenplays in Hollywood.
This year's list was revealed yesterday by its compiler, film executive Franklin Leonard. It consists of the screenplays which a team of more than 300 movie producers most liked but that did not end up making it into cinemas by the end of the year. "The Black List is a snapshot of the collective taste of the people who develop, produce, and release theatrical feature films in the Hollywood studio system and the mainstream independent system," said Leonard on website.
The list is often a useful indicator of upcoming film-making trends, and this year is no exception. The mashup genre, which began with the forthcoming film adaptation of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, is well represented with the likes of Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, Boy Scouts vs Zombies and the delightful-sounding Fucking Jane Austen, in which two friends angry at Jane Austen for creating unrealistic romantic expectations among modern-day women get sent back in time to the 19th century. "The only way for them to return home is for one of them to get Jane Austen to fall in love and sleep with him," reports the list.
There are also indications of Hollywood's continuing obsession with famous historical and cultural figures. The list is topped by writer Wes Jones's screenplay College Republicans, which centres on aspiring politician Karl Rove's "real-life" dirty campaign for national College Republican chairman under the guidance of Lee Atwater, his campaign manager. No 2 on the list is the previously mentioned Jackie, by Noah Oppenheim.
Some screenplays on the list have suspicious hints of previously successful movies. Point A, by Chris Rubeo, could be a warped take on the Oscar-winning Juno with its storyline about a witty, wise-beyond-her-years teenage video blogger who falls in love with a 30-year-old magazine writer. Replay, by Jason Smilovic, the tale of a teenager who gets to relive his life over and over, has shades of the classic Bill Murray comedy Groundhog Day.
A number of the films on the list, including Abraham Lincoln, are already in production. Others in this category include Oz the Great and Powerful, which is set to star Robert Downey Jr as the famous wizard, and Snow White and the Huntsman, in which the huntsman sent to kill the fairytale character instead becomes her beau.
The strangest story on the list? Well, how about Jesse Armstrong's Murdoch, in which the News International boss Rupert Murdoch arrives at a family dinner to try and "convince his elder children to alter the family trust so that his two youngest children by his newest wife will have voting rights in the company"? Don't expect Twentieth Century Fox to be greenlighting that one any time soon.