Boston Marathon Bombings to Be Adapted for the Big Screen. But Is It Too Soon?
Apparently, a three-month-long grace period is all that is necessary in Hollywood now before dramatizing real-life events on the silver screen. Screenwriters Eric Johnson and Paul Tamasy have optioned the rights to a forthcoming (as in, not even written yet) book called Boston Strong by author Casey Sherman, writer of The Fighter. Deadline broke the news Monday that the book will be published sometime next year by the University Press of New England. On Wednesday, suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev will be arraigned in front of hundreds of victims and their families in a Boston court.
Obviously, this is some Twilight Zone art-imitating-life gusto, right? It has to be. Three months have barely passed since the April 15 bombing at the Patriots Day Boston Marathon, a city tradition to celebrate community. The trial to convict Tsarnaev has barely begun. Wounds are still healing. Why the clamorous rush to grab rights to the event?
Arguably, and uncomfortably, the events of the April 15 bombing and the subsequent manhunt and arrest of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev were uncannily cinematic, with an overwhelming social media response to the hundreds of photos and livestreams of the event. (Not to mention the carjacking victim's dramatic account.) But there has barely been time to reflect or heal, let alone scribe a book and a screenplay and film a movie. Without a certain period of distance from a tragedy, perspective is lost, and does not bode well for those who hope to capitalize on the very, very real aftermath of a domestic terrorist attack. Even United 93, one of the most well-made films of 2006, was too painful.
The silver lining? The film would probably not be released for at least a few years. As Bryanna Cappadona from Boston Magazine wisely advised, "Slow the hell down, Hollywood."