Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
New ‘Ant-Man’ Photos; Movie May Include More Marvel Cinematic Universe Characters New ‘Ant-Man’ Photos; Movie May Include More Marvel Cinematic Universe Characters Over 30 New 'Jurassic World' Photos, Plus 2 New Clips & Lots Of New TV Spots Over 30 New 'Jurassic World' Photos, Plus 2 New Clips & Lots Of New TV Spots Matt Damon Goes Interstellar Again In New Pics From Ridley Scott's 'The Martian' Matt Damon Goes Interstellar Again In New Pics From Ridley Scott's 'The Martian' First Look: Matt Damon As An Astronaut In Ridley Scott’s ‘The Martian’ First Look: Matt Damon As An Astronaut In Ridley Scott’s ‘The Martian’ Cannes Review: Justin Kurzel's 'Macbeth' Starring Michael Fassbender & Marion Cotillard Cannes Review: Justin Kurzel's 'Macbeth' Starring Michael Fassbender & Marion Cotillard Watch: Incredible Vintage Footage Of Audience Reactions To 'The Exorcist' In 1973 Watch: Incredible Vintage Footage Of Audience Reactions To 'The Exorcist' In 1973 Cannes Review: Gaspar Noé's Hardcore And Softhearted 'Love' Cannes Review: Gaspar Noé's Hardcore And Softhearted 'Love' Here's The Character Backstory For Doof aka Guitar Flamethrower Dude In 'Mad Max: Fury Road' Here's The Character Backstory For Doof aka Guitar Flamethrower Dude In 'Mad Max: Fury Road' Cannes Review: Hou Hsiao-Hsien's 'The Assassin' Is An Epic Visual Poem Cannes Review: Hou Hsiao-Hsien's 'The Assassin' Is An Epic Visual Poem The 10 Most Controversial Cannes Films Ever The 10 Most Controversial Cannes Films Ever Roger Deakins To Shoot Denis Villeneuve's 'Blade Runner' Sequel Roger Deakins To Shoot Denis Villeneuve's 'Blade Runner' Sequel More NSFW Posters For Gaspar Noe's 3D 'Love' Plus The Official Director's Statement More NSFW Posters For Gaspar Noe's 3D 'Love' Plus The Official Director's Statement Cannes: Watch A Three Way Makeout In The First Clip From Gaspar Noe’s 3D ‘Love’ Plus New NSFW Image Cannes: Watch A Three Way Makeout In The First Clip From Gaspar Noe’s 3D ‘Love’ Plus New NSFW Image Simon Pegg Worries That Adults Obsessed With Comics & Sci-Fi Have Become "Infantilized By Our Own Taste" Simon Pegg Worries That Adults Obsessed With Comics & Sci-Fi Have Become "Infantilized By Our Own Taste" George Miller Says 'Interstellar' Came Close To What His Version Of 'Contact' Would've Been Like George Miller Says 'Interstellar' Came Close To What His Version Of 'Contact' Would've Been Like New NSFW, Extremely Graphic, Adults-Only Poster For Gaspar Noe's 'Love' New NSFW, Extremely Graphic, Adults-Only Poster For Gaspar Noe's 'Love' The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season 10 Movies Booed At Cannes 10 Movies Booed At Cannes All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More

Oliver Stone Exits Martin Luther King Biopic, Says Estate Wouldn't Approve His Warts And All Script

Photo of Kevin Jagernauth By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist January 17, 2014 at 4:48PM

The Martin Luther King Jr. movie seems to be the white whale of biopics. No less than three different attempts to bring the iconic civil rights leader to the big screen are currently underway, but one of them has just lost a director. Last fall, DreamWorks revealed they were putting together an MLK project and eyeing Oliver Stone to direct, with Jamie Foxx in the lead role, and none other than Steven Spielberg putting his weight behind the movie as a producer. But it seems that once again, the King estate has kiboshed a film that won't show the man in anything less than a perfect light.
6
Oliver Stone Jamie Foxx Martin Luther King Jr.

The Martin Luther King Jr. movie seems to be the white whale of biopics. No less than three different attempts to bring the iconic civil rights leader to the big screen are currently underway, but one of them has just lost a director. Last fallDreamWorks revealed they were putting together an MLK project and eyeing Oliver Stone to direct, with Jamie Foxx in the lead role, and none other than Steven Spielberg putting his weight behind the movie as a producer. But it seems that once again, the King estate has kiboshed a film that won't show the man in anything less than a perfect light.

Stone hit Twitter today to announce he had left the project and provided details on his script, which would have shown both the herosim and flaws of MLK, and those around him. Here's what Stone had to say:

A bit of a bummer, but perhaps not a total surprise. Paul Greengrass' "Memphis" ran afoul of the estate back in 2011 for similar reasons when he was first trying to mount the movie, and their concerns wound up forcing Universal to kibosh the film (Greengrass does still intend to make the biopic, though he has recently said it will likely be after he does another movie first). And Lee Daniels' "Selma" (recently taken over by Ava DuVernay) also ran into the same sorts of problems a few years ago too.


So we'll see what the next move is for DreamWorks, but it would seem no one is going to make this movie without the tacit approval of the MLK estate, who have proven exacting in how they want the man portrayed. Thoughts? Do you think an MLK biopic can be made that's both true to the man, while satisfying the needs of his family? Let us know below.

This article is related to: Oliver Stone


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates