It was only a matter of time before somebody in Hollywood went to work on the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election – beyond spirited speeches at awards ceremonies, that is. Unsurprisingly, it seems that among the first out of the gate will be a project created by Mark Boal and Megan Ellison – the writer-producer team behind Zero Dark Thirty. The surprising part is that this project is being envisioned as a series, rather than a feature film.
For her part, producer Megan Ellison – an Academy Award nominee – has built an impressive career bringing a diverse range of films to the big screen. Her resume includes notable titles such as True Grit, Zero Dark Thirty, The Master, Her, American Hustle, Foxcatcher, The Bad Batch, Everybody Wants Some!!, and 20th Century Women. For his part, freelance journalist-turned-screenwriter Mark Boal has made it his business to bring challenging, real subject matter to the big screen, in a big way. In his work as a journalist, Boal was embedded with bomb squads in Iraq in 2004, and his Playboy Magazine article, Death And Dishonor, was adapted for film as 2007’s In The Valley Of Elah. Boal followed this with the Academy Award winning screenplay for The Hurt Locker, and then wrote the controversial Zero Dark Thirty.
For this planned examination of the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election, Boal and Ellison are seeking to create a political drama spanning 8-10 hours in length, with an as-yet unknown broadcaster. There is a suggestion that Boal will make his directorial debut with at least part of the project, as well as writing the script, using contributions from a group of equally experienced investigative journalists.
The 2016 U.S. Presidential Election is an event that is ripe for a dramatic telling. From the controversies surrounding the nomination processes of the Democratic and Republican parties, to the months-long showdowns between candidates Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, the entire episode has culminated in a Trump Administration that is already mired in intelligence leaks, worldwide protests, allegations of financial corruption, and accusations of treason, less than a month into the presidency. This is exactly the kind of political-social quagmire in which both Mark Boal and Megan Ellison excel. Given the way in which the Trump Presidency continues to lurch from one disaster to the next, however, it remains unclear as to when this series might reach our screens.