Russell Crowe to direct Ellroy Screenplay

Totally robbed this from the guardian site but as an avid fan of James Ellroy I’m keen to see this happen.
Obviously L.A. Confidential was an incredible film but i also quite liked ‘Cop’ from 1987 with James Woods being James Woods and Nicholas Cage crazy throughout. The black Dahlia was a total disaster, miscast and terribly acted, directed and edited. A huge lost opportunity, hopefully this will be better.

Russell Crowe is considering making his feature directorial debut on the period cop film 77, according to Deadline.

The screenplay is based on a story by James Ellroy, whose novel LA Confidential was adapted for the 1997 Curtis Hanson film in which Crowe starred. It will connect two stories from 1974 which drew public attention at the time: the unsolved murder of an LA police officer and a notorious shootout between members of “leftwing revolutionary unit” the Symbionese Liberation Army and the LAPD. The firefight, one of the largest in US history, saw more than 50,000 rounds of gunfire exchanged and resulted in the deaths of five members of the group.

Crowe may also take a role in the film, whose events will be seen through the eyes of two police partners, one black and one white.

The SLA was intended to be a black revolutionary organisation, though only one of its members was in fact African American. The group’s short-lived mid-70s period of activity has been fertile territory for Hollywood over the years.

It was parodied in the 1976 Sidney Lumet film Network, which depicted a flamboyant revolutionary organisation hired to kill newscaster-turned-orator Howard Beale. Later, in Paul Schrader’s 1988 film, Patty Hearst, Natasha Richardson played a young heiress who was kidnapped by the SLA and later announced she had joined them. The teenager’s actions were explained by psychologists as symptomatic of Stockholm syndrome, in which victims of kidnapping come to identify with their captors.

Crowe has signalled his intention to direct in the past, but projects have never quite come to fruition. He was previously attached to two Australian projects, the surf drama Bra Boys and the second world war tale The Long Green Shore.

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