Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Frank Miller to Direct John F. Kennedy BioPic

Acclaimed comic book veteran Frank Miller has worked on some of the biggest characters in comics like Batman, Daredevil and Superman. Now it looks like Miller will be working on one of the biggest characters in history: after several industry rumours and one leaked draft of a script, Warner Brothers have now officially greenlit Frank Miller’s John F. Kennedy project.

Tentatively titled “Lee Harvey’s Big Hit”, Frank Miller is enthusiastic about this opportunity to tackle one of the biggest legends of the 20th century.

“I’ve always been intrigued by the story of Jack Kennedy,” Miller says. “In fact, if you look through some of my old works I’ve consciously homaged it several times. For example, that bit in Sin City where Marv cuts off the limbs of a serial killer then feeds him to a pack of ravenous dogs was inspired by footage of Jack Ruby shooting Lee Harvey Oswald.”

This announcement is good news for Miller's fans, but it is safe to say that people who are only familiar with the John F. Kennedy legend through such films as Oliver Stone’s JFK will probably be startled by the classic tale as seen through Frank Miller’s unique storytelling sensibilities.

With one scene from the leaked script featuring Bobby Kennedy shouting “For the USA!” as he eviscerates a horde of Al Qaeda terrorists with a katana blade, this is clearly not your father’s version of the JFK legend.

“Yeah I’ve taken a few creative liberties,” Miller admits. “But as Napoleon once said, “History is written by the winners”. Well, all those other versions of the JFK story were made by losers.”

However, Frank Miller argues that many of the changes he has made serve the purpose of strengthening the narrative.

“I’ve always felt that the original story really lacked a strong female character,” Miller explains. “So I’ve decided to strengthen the role of Jacqueline Kennedy. In other versions of the story, she was just a vapid socialite so I’ve re-imagined her as a Taiwanese ninja assassin prostitute. Nothing establishes a strong, indepent, female character like lingerie worn in public and kick-ass samurai blades!”

A Production Sketch of Jackie O

The film will also address the other woman in JFK's life, his alleged mistress Marilyn Monroe.

“Yeah, Marilyn's in it. She’ll be a prostitute too. As will Lyndon Johnson.”

The changes don’t end there. Allegedly, Lee Harvey Oswald will be undergo a heavy revision, the character wearing women's lingerie and large gold hoop earings in early production sketches for the film. Frank Miller confirms this and hints that Lee Harvey might not even be American.

“Yeah, Lee Harvey will be a Russian. The thing is I see the assassination of the President as an attack on the American way of life. And nothing suggests a threat to good old fashioned American values like a big ol’ girly foreigner in a dress,” he explains.

Miller has also taken this opportunity to add new elements to the JFK legend.

“Originally, JFK never really had any last words before his brains got splattered all over the car and stuff. So I wrote him some. As of the current script, the last thing Jack Kennedy says before he dies is ‘Now who’s laughing. The sweat and the grime and prostitute’s tears linger in the dust as I taste the acrid air of Dallas, Texas. I see the crowds cheer. They cheer. They cheer. But they’re all faceless corpses applauding a bloated emperor with no clothes. A disease tearing at the flesh of the innocent. Now who’s laughing. Now who’s laughing.’ Then Lee Harvey shoots him with a Korean assassin ninja shotgun or something.”

Lee Harvey’s Big Hit will hit cinemas November, 2008.