Variety and the N.Y. Times reported this afternoon that Twentieth Century Fox is developing a film about the Supreme Court’s recent marriage-equality ruling. Fox has acquired the life rights of Jim Obergefell, the lead plaintiff in the lawsuit that went to the court. To cover their bases the studio has also bought life rights to Obergefell’s attorney Al Gerhardstein.
On 6.26 The Onion ran a piece about such a project, beginning with the following:
“WASHINGTON — Shortly after turning in dissenting opinions in landmark federal rulings today that struck down the Defense of Marriage Act and conferred full federal benefits to married same-sex couples, Supreme Court justices Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, John G. Roberts and Samuel Alito reportedly realized today that they would someday be portrayed as villains in an Oscar-winning film about the fight for marriage equality.
“’Oh, God, the major social ramifications, the political intrigue, all the important people involved in the case — I’m going to be played by some sinister character actor in a drama with tons of award buzz, aren’t I?” said Scalia, joining his fellow dissenting justices in realizing they would be antagonists in a film potentially titled Defense Of Marriage and probably written by Tony Kushner.
“’I’m going to be portrayed as a closed-minded Neanderthal and the very symbol of backward thinking. And at the end of the movie, when my character realizes he’s on the wrong side of history, the audience will feel emotionally fulfilled because the hero attorney, probably played by George fucking Clooney, will have won. Great.”
“‘While they added that they aren’t looking forward to being vilified on screen, Scalia, Roberts, Alito, and Thomas all agreed that the movie would probably be pretty good, and that they could see Paul Dano getting his first Academy Award nomination for his supporting role as a gay rights crusader.'”
Fox has reportedly set up the project with producers Wyck Godfrey and Marty Bowen through their Temple Hill banner. The project will be handled by Fox 2000. The studio has also bought the movie rights to a book proposal by Obergefell and Debbie Cenziper, to be titled “21 Years to Midnight.”
How about Paul Giamatti as Obergefell?