The Black List, though ominously named, is actually something of an honor. It’s an annual compilation put together by executives in charge of development at Hollywood studios, of the scripts from the past year that they liked the most… but decided not to license or put into production. It’s not unusual for films from The Black List to get made after appearing on it, in some ways, it’s pretty good publicity. Topping the list at number four last year was Rodham, a biopic about the early adulthood of Hillary Rodham Clinton, former U.S. First Lady, Secretary of State, and very nearly the first female presidential candidate nominated by a major party, and yes, it’s reportedly found a director.
The Wrap is reporting that James Ponsoldt has signed on to direct Rodham, based on the Black List script by Young Il Kim. Back in January, when we heard abou the film for the first time, it was summarized like this:
During the height of the Watergate scandal, rising star Hillary Rodham is the youngest lawyer chosen for the House Judiciary Committee to Impeach Nixon, but she soon finds herself forced to choose between a destined path to the White House and her unresolved feelings for Bill Clinton, her former boyfriend who now teaches law in Arkansas.
The project also has producers on board, but is not quite yet attached to a large studio. According to The Wrap, producers plan to cast a young actress to play Rodham Clinton before they start shopping the movie around. Given the time period of the movie, and the audience’s foreknowledge of what Bill and Hillary would get up to in the rest of their lives, it’s definitely a project that could turn out very interesting, especially for the actress who nabs that lead role.
I do agree with Women and Hollywood, though, that it’d be great to see a movie about a politically and historically significant woman, especially one who’s worked as hard for women’s empowerment globally as Hillary Clinton, get a female director instead of a male one. Hopefully Ponsoldt does a great job, and the movie wins Oscars, but it seems like a missed opportunity for the project to put its money where its themes are.
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