Hollywood often has to be a place big enough for two movies about the same topic. Or three or four or a dozen by the time a popular trend has run its course. Is Hollywood big enough for two movies about Moses? And if so, is Hollywood big enough for two movies about Moses directed by two legendary directors?
Steven Spielberg has a big lead over Ridley Scott at the moment. Spielberg's epic about Moses is to be tentatively titled "Gods and Kings" and will be the Biblical equivalent of a superhero trilogy all in one nice tight little package. Spielberg intends to go the C.B. DeMille route by telling the story of Moses from cradle to commandments.
Ridley Scott recently announced that he intends to take a look at the life of Moses that is more the stuff of George Stevens than DeMille. Scott wants to look at the Prince of Egypt through the lens of his personal relationship with Ramses. The tentative title here is simply "Moses" but I personally think "A Place in the Desert Sun" is much more elegant.
Somehow Hollywood missed the memo that the Bush II administration was the proper time to recycle the Biblical epic excitement that gripped the silver screen during the 1950s. Biblical epics were big during the 1950s when Right Wing paranoia and return to looking at the word in black and white terms became all the rage. To escape the 1950s style danger of Islamic terrorists-communists-lurking around every corner in the black and white world outside, families by the millions piled inside those doors to experience in glorious Technicolor the thrilling adventures of Moses, Jesus, Samson and other greatest heroes of the bible.
Such a Hollywood trend would have been perfectly timed during the Age of Dubya, but studio execs are lagging big time. Nearly a full Presidential term after the exit our Bush, the Holy Bible is now almost as popular a resource for movie ideas as Stephen King. In addition to two projects now in development about Moses, there is also Darren Aronofsky's "Noah" that will reteam Oscar winners Russell Crowe and Jennifer Connelly and Paul Verhoeven planning a movie about Jesus. The wildly successful revival of "Jesus Christ Superstar" spurred development plans to remake it for the silver screen.
Yes sir, the Bible is the new comic book and these heroes don't even have to wear tights.
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