It's time for our next Depression-era drama about entertainers on the road. First there was Carnivàle, which dealt with heaven, hell and carnivals, with dusty healers and creepy preachers. Now a paperback that has been growing in popularity, Sara Gruen's Water for Elephants, has been picked up for an adaptation. Andrew R. Tennenbaum, who worked with Doug Liman to bring The Bourne Identity to the screen, used his own money for the option. Considering the fact that he spotted the cinema gem in Bourne, and feels strong enough about this project to use his own money, I imagine this could be a pretty funky project. Depressing, but funky.

See, Elephants is about the life of Jacob Jankowski -- a man who spent most of his life in the circus. The book is told from him in his nineties, rotting away in a nursing home. When he was 21, and about to take exams at Cornell to become a vet, his parents died in a car crash. When he finds out that they were broke, and that they mortgaged everything to pay for his tuition, he can't complete his tests and runs off to join a crappy, second-string circus. Far from a life of glitter and wonder, he deals with abused animals, a circus leader with a penchant for violence and other craziness. And, just to make life more difficult, Jankowski falls for the wife of the circus' crazy animal trainer. Interestingly enough, the script will be written by Leonard Hartman, whose last project was the upcoming Goosebumps -- you know, the R. L. Stine creepy children's book. While there is no word yet on a director or cast, since it's just in the baby stages, I wonder if it'll give us out next chance for more Michael J. Anderson.
categories Movies, Cinematical