It’s not often we see high pedigree filmmakers gravitate to big budget disaster fare, but in the case of Universal’s upcoming tentpole Earthquake, just that has happened. Dustin Lance Black, the Oscar-winning screenwriter of Milk and scribe of last year’s J. Edgar, is being courted to lend his pen to the film, which will be produced by J.J. Abrams’ company Bad Robot.
Earthquake is not to be confused with the other forthcoming ground-shaking blockbuster San Andreas 3D over at New Line (which will be helmed by Journey 2: The Mysterious Island’s Brad Peyton and written by Carlton Cruse of Lost fame) and is apparently not a remake of the 1974 flick.
This seems like yet another instance in the long line of cinematic doppelgangers that Hollywood seems to love fashioning: from Dante’s Peak and Volcano to Armageddon and Deep Impact to last year’s No Strings Attached and Friends With Benefits (oh, and don’t forget the soon-to-be-warring “White House siege films” Olympus Has Fallen and White House Down due for 2013).
If there is anything to be truly excited about for Earthquake it is Dustin Lance Black’s involvement as even though his work in Clint Eastwood’s J. Edgar wasn’t quite up to snuff, the deft hand he leant to Milk was deserving of the accolades it received. Let’s hope he can infuse a real human touch in what is sure to be constructed as nothing but a grand, city-crumbling spectacle, but looking at the track record of such fare, it seems like an arduous task at best.
Do you think Black has a chance at breaking the mould for disaster films of this ilk?