By our guest blogger, Joe Oliveto
Having devoted his energies to motion-capture films for the past few years, according to The Hollywood Reporter, Robert Zemeckis may soon be returning to live-action filmmaking with “Flight,” a drama about a heroic pilot with a history of substance abuse.
Written by John Gatins, “Flight” tells the story of a pilot who saves the day when an engine malfunction threatens to doom his plane and passengers, landing him in the spotlight. However, an FAA investigation yields evidence of alcoholism and drug-addiction, which investigators try to conceal in order to preserve the pilot’s image. Denzel Washington is in consideration for the lead role.
Well, sounds like someone mixed together the story of America’s Favorite Pilot, Sully, with an episode of “TMZ,” but to be fair, this could make for a powerful drama. It would be interesting to see how Zemeckis handles the material; he is obviously a strong filmmaker, but many of his pictures have relied on unusual scenarios or intriguing effects to score audience attention. The “Back to the Future” films obviously dealt with time travel, “Forrest Gump” involved experiments with integrating special effects in a convincing manner, and “Cast Away” asked if we could enjoy a movie in which most of the action involves Tom Hanks living alone on an island.
“Flight” sounds more straightforward, but that could be a good thing. At the core of the best Zemeckis films is a sense of strong character, and maybe for the first time in a while, we won’t be distracted by the gimmick and can instead just enjoy a damn good story. He certainly knows how to tell one.