Not long ago, we told you how George Clooney had dropped out of Joe Carnahan's adaptation of White Jazz due to scheduling conflicts. Before that, another actor Carnahan was interested in, Chris Pine, opted to become the new Captain Kirk over a co-starring role in Jazz. Now, considering these new developments, Carnahan is reaching out to readers of his blog for advice on how to move forward. As it stands, he has two films that are ready to roll into production: White Jazz (based on a James Ellroy novel) and Killing Pablo (based on a book by Mark Bowden, that takes a look back at the rise and fall of Pablo Escobar). According to Carnahan, the potential writer's strike doesn't hurt either project, as the scripts are pretty much done. However, there's a rival Escobar pic (from Oliver Stone) gaining steam, and so Carnahan is afraid he'll lose foreign buyers if he rolls in as number two.
Okay, so naturally you'd think Killing Pablo would be the way to go. Well, problem is that would mean Javier Bardem would not be able to star as Escobar (due to a another project he's currently attached to) and, additionally, Carnahan isn't crazy about ditching LA at the moment in order to go shoot on location in South America (he's like to stay close to his family for the time being). But, according to the director, he has it figured out: "I've got a plan to base out of LA and I [am] hoping the financiers will see the upside and spend the extra money to keep us relatively local until we've got to hit Argentina or Venezuela or Brazil (Colombia's gonna be ROUGH) and shoot the remainder of the film on location." As far as casting goes, he claims to have the perfect replacement for Bardem, but won't shell out any names.
But what about all the work that's been done on White Jazz, including some wicked-looking concept art of old school Los Angeles that Carnahan displayed on his blog recently? We're not entirely sure; as it stands, it appears there's more pressure to shoot Pablo first because of this rival project, and perhaps the casting woes on Jazz are a sign that Pablo should come up to bat before Jazz. I'd personally like to see White Jazz go first, but that's me. What do you think he should do?
UPDATE: Joe Carnahan is nutty as all hell. In a rare move, he published both the White Jazz script and the Killing Pablo script on his website, asking readers which one he should make. He's since taken them both down after his management company advised him to, but Slashfilm grabbed them and has links to both scripts. I won't give you those links, because we'd be asked to take them down almost immediately (I know it), so head on over to Slashfilm instead to check them out.