History/Drama films, such as The Social Network and Steve Jobs, are my favorite films to watch. While they’re by no means an accurate re-telling of the actual events, it’s still entertaining to get a sense of how these major companies or well-known figures came to be. After all, a film is meant to entertain and not educate, although exceptions are made depending on the filmmaker. This leads me to an upcoming new film that’s said to be in the vein of both The Social Network and Steve Jobs.
The Current War is an upcoming film that tells the story of a rivalry between Thomas Edison and George Westinghouse to who would invent “the defining mode of producing electric power and light”. Although it’s set in the 1800’s, the film’s producer, Basil Iwanyk, says not to expect “a stodgy period drama”. Here’s his description on what to expect on this sort-of modern take for The Current War.
“It’s the story of the race to kind of light up the eastern seaboard, specifically Manhattan, between Thomas Edison and George Westinghouse. The movie isn’t played like a stodgy period drama, it feels like The Social Network or Steve Jobs. It’s the idea of Bill Gates and Steve Jobs went toe-to-toe to create the lightbulb, and that’s what these characters were. They’re larger than life, and they’re aggressive and tough and funny and geniuses, and that’s the vibe of the movie.”
What The Social Network and Steve Jobs had in common (besides great scripts from Aaron Sorkin) was lead actors who no matter how unlikeable they were at times, were always interesting to watch. For the roles of Thomas Edison and George Westinghouse, the filmmakers cast Benedict Cumberbatch (Edison) and Michael Shannon (Westinghouse). I’ve seen more than enough work from both actors to be convinced they’ll do great.
Filming for The Current War is currently underway in London, with an incredible supporting cast that includes Nicholas Hoult, Katherine Waterston, and Tom Holland. Alfonso Gomez-Rejon is onboard to direct, which is great news after his indie darling (Me, Earl, and the Dying Girl) received major praise from both critics and audiences. I’m hoping the production goes smooth enough to make a late 2017 release, because this film is my cup of tea.