Clint Eastwood's latest, "Hoover," has been the talk of the town recently since New York Magazine's Culture Vulture blog announced that the director wants Joaquin Phoenix to play the title character's boyfriend, Clyde Tolson. There seemed to be some doubts, though, as to whether or not long-time leading man Leonardo DiCaprio was still attached to the role of J. Edgar Hoover, but MovieLine had the chance to catch up with the film's screenwriter, Oscar winner Dustin Lance Black, who was able to set the record straight on the matter. Needless to say, the film is still starring DiCaprio, though Black was mum on the Phoenix rumors.
According to Black, the script is completed and the film is set to start shooting early next year, and that the script won't be as linear as his previous Oscar-winner, "Milk." "People know Hoover -- or think they know Hoover -- and that’s great as a writer because you’re free as a writer to explore other stuff," Black said. "People didn’t know Milk, so I think it needed a more traditional structure."
He admitted to MovieLine that he's a big history buff -- "I've read all the books" -- and that his problem with the retellings of Hoover's history is that they're all told from a detached perspective. Black credited this to the fact that the first director of the FBI never let anyone in to share his story with, but it is his goal with this film to show an alternate perspective.
"'Hoover' is told from Hoover’s point of view, which I’ve never seen before," Black explained. "Because of that -- and the contradiction between what he believed his history was and what his history actually was -- it lends itself to a less-traditional structure. There are more contradictions."
This sounds like an intriguing subjective take on history, and it's little wonder why Eastwood and DiCaprio were quick to jump on board to the project, despite its all-star pedigree. "Milk" was similarly told from its title character's perspective, and it will be interesting to see if Black uses a comparable device like Harvey Milk recording his life story into a voice recorder for Hoover to explain his own motives.
Are you glad that DiCaprio is still on board with the project? What do you think of Black's description of the film's script?