Slow news week = scoops coming from DVD commentaries.
It’s a weird place to have discussed it, but apparently Oliver Stone uses his director’s commentary track on the new Wall Street 2 DVD (win it from CHUD here) to tease the potential rebirth of Pinkville, his long-gestating return to Vietnam. It would seem Wall Street star Shia LeBeouf’ has great interest in tackling the project with Stone, and the director is discussing rekindling the film, centered around the young actor.
2007 was the year of Pinkville‘s initial development, but the writer’s strike was too huge of a roadblock for United Artists to continue funding the film, and it was shelved. Before the hiatus, Stone cast Bruce Willis, Channing Tatum, Woody Harrelson, and Xzibit in the film, with Tobey Jones and Michael Pitt apparently circling the project while it was active. That’s an interesting cast peppered with greats, and one hopes Stone can reassemble it all these years later, though Channing Tatum probably shouldn’t expect his phone to ring as it’s his role that LeBeouf is keen on.
While the film itself is more of a drama about the investigation and prosecution of those involved, the story centers around the famous My Lai massacre, an event that brought the atrocities of the Vietnam war to even more public light and shattered any remaining belief in American righteousness in that war. American infantrymen where involved in the murder of hundreds of innocent Vietnamese villagers under the order of Lt. William Calley. The massacre was stopped by an American helicopter pilot Hugh Thompson, the role that Shia LeBeouf is likely interested in playing. The actor’s father was just such a helicopter pilot during that war, hence his enthusiasm for the project.
Wall Street 2 slipped by me this year, but by all accounts Oliver Stone is still a powerful director, just one that isn’t aiming at groundbreaking material. If it takes him returning to the controversial subject matter that first ignited his career to energize him then so be it- I’ll take difficult and potentially over-indulgent Stone over bland, middle-of-the-road Stone any day. Fingers crossed he doesn’t go for a more measured, “mature” look at his old cinematic stomping grounds to end up with a valueless piece of boring. This kind of subject should get him mad and feisty, not melodramatic and Oscar-baity…