The last year has been a haze of ‘will he/won’t he’ stories connecting Steven Spielberg to projects that were all over the map; now it looks like he’s emerged from that period with a decision. His next movie will be War Horse, coming to theaters in 2011.
The film will be based on Michael Morpugo’s novel about WWI told from the point of view of a horse who experiences life on both sides of the trenches. Morpugo’s children’s book sees Joey, an English horse, getting sold to the army. In France he charges into battle but is captured by the Germans, who use him to pull an ambulance cart. Along the way he sees the horror and terror of World War I’s indiscriminate slaughter.
They didn’t make kid’s books like that when I was a kid.
I had heard that Spielberg was going crazy trying to come up with a film to rival Avatar, but I like the sound of War Horse for him much more. It reminds me of Empire of the Sun, which could be the director’s most underrated film.
The film has some heavyweights in the script department as well. Richard Curtis (Love, Actually) is teaming up with Lee Hall (a playwright who wrote the original Billy Elliot film) to adapt Morpugo’s novel, apparently using a stage adaptation of the same as ammunition.