After taking home Oscar gold for penning Gus Van Sant's Milk, Dustin Lance Black is now tackling another biopic about a controversial and divisive figure in American history in Hoover, the J. Edgar Hoover biopic being developed by Universal Pictures and Ron Howard’s Imagine Entertainment.
No director is attached as of yet, and there's no word of whether or not this is being set up a potential directing vehicle for Howard himself. But that would be a logical choice, especially if Howard is looking to take on more Oscar bait between the Robert Langdon films he's directed, with the next installment, The Lost Symbol, in the works.
Hoover will cover the "career of FBI Director who founded the organization in 1935 and remained director until his death in 1972. He made the FBI what it is today — an efficient crime-fighting organization — in part by harassing dissenters and building secret files on politicians. He is most often associated with his role in fighting the gangster wars in the ’30s and, later, the Mafia."
Hoover was most recently portrayed by Billy Crudup in Michael Mann’s Public Enemies, but Hoover’s famed efforts to bring down John Dillinger took the backseat to other plot lines. While Public Enemies didn't wow critics or audiences -- taking in only $97 million, despite the star power of Christian Bale and Johnny Depp -- it may have increased awareness and interest in Hoover. Crudup's performance was good, but I felt it sometimes slipped into parody with his voice. Still, I alway love Crudup, so an entire movie where he could spend more time honing Hoover, would be a real treat. But there has been no casting as of yet.