Warner Bros. stokes ‘Fire’ yet again

Studio eyes spring 2006 start date for Williams cousins pic

Warner Bros. has rekindled “Young Men and Fire” by setting Tod C. Williams to direct the film. His cousin, Tod H. Williams, is adapting the Norman Maclean book.

WB is eyeing a spring 2006 start date in Montana. Paula Weinstein and Len Amato will produce for Spring Creek.

Studio tried for more than a decade to make a movie out of a book written by the “A River Runs Through It” author just before he died. The book is about a 1949 Montana forest fire that, stoked by a rare combination of winds and explosions, produced flames the equivalent of 40 stories tall that moved 50 mph. Battling it was a group of smoke jumpers who parachuted into the conflagration. A total of 13 men died in the blaze.

Weinstein and WB exec Kevin McCormick gave the book to Williams, who managed to take one part of the sprawling John Irving novel “A Widow for One Year” and turn it into the Jeff Bridges/Kim Basinger pic “The Door in the Floor.”

The Maclean book was sitting around the house and got picked up by the director’s like-named cousin, with whom Williams was working on several other scripts. Williams the writer will make his directing debut this fall on indie “Trainwreck,” which he also wrote. The Williams duo sparked to Maclean’s themes of mortality and came up with a take that got the studio and producers excited.

“There were a pile of previous scripts, but they all seemed to deal with guilt and blame about the event, who was responsible,” said the director. “We started from scratch, looking at them as young men who’d missed the war, and some of whom were conscientious objectors, a hard stance to justify in WWII. We saw them as real action heroes in a war movie with no enemy except the elements.”

Filed Under:

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0

Leave a Reply

No Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More Film News from Variety