I was talking with someone earlier today about the list of pre-strike projects that was released over at ComingSoon.net, and we both had the same reaction: what's with that Amelia Earhart project? It's apparently an indie film that's in the works -- a documentary, maybe? -- but this is the first I've heard of it. Indie is exactly the wrong way to go with this, by the way -- it strikes me as the kind of material that would make for a big-budget, major star vehicle with someone like Scorsese behind the lens. Earhart was thirty-nine when she went down in her last round-the-world flight, so any A-list actress in her mid to late-thirties could take on the role. Cate Blanchett? Sold. Greenlight. Earhart's life story is also the stuff Hollywood movies are made of. She had near-death experiences in her early flying career, she was down and out for a time, and then she got sponsorship from a wealthy society feminist (Susan Sarandon) who wanted to show that a woman could do what Charles Lindbergh did. You can't make this stuff up, people.
The film could also choose its own ending. To date, there are three competing theories on what happened to Earhart, though only two of those have substantial backing. The first is that her plane simply ran out of gas and crashed at sea, and would never have been found in the ensuing years because the ditch area is over 18,000 feet deep. Much evidence supports this. There's also been a long-debated second theory, that Earhart and her co-pilot made it to nearby Gardner Island, where they presumably starved or died of crash injuries. So much physical evidence has turned up to support this theory that a team was there investigating as recently as August, 2007. Then there's a third, more far-fetched theory that says Earhart ditched the plane on Saipan and was captured and killed by the Japanese. Which one to choose?