In the fourth of five outtakes from the current cover story interview with Footloose director Craig Brewer, some material on where he stands with the much-speculated-about Tarzan project and what's going on locally with Brewer's BR2 Productions office.
On the status of Tarzan:
I just finished, actually last night, a polish on my last draft. I still need to turn it over to the studio. I caution any sort of excitement on that with the idea that they might not want to go in that direction. My [take] is a very specific type of direction. You never know, it might be too expensive. It's a weird place for someone like me to be where I want to be excited and think of it as my next movie, but it might not be. You and I have had conversations like that before.
That being said, I really love my script. I know these things are just blueprints for skyscrapers that are to be built later. But I'm still a writer and I want to feel some kind of closure and pride on what I've written, even if it never gets made.
Flyer: Let's clarify exactly what the situation is with Tarzan. Correct me if any of this is wrong: Warner Bros. had the rights and wants to make a movie because the rights are going to expire in the near future. They were soliciting pitches. You gave your treatment of what you'd want to do with it. They liked it and hired you to write a script based on that treatment. You'll turn that script in and it may or may not be accepted, but if it is, the idea is that you will then direct as well.
That's the situation. There are no other directors currently attached to Tarzan. They had accepted pitches on other script ideas and also went with another writer to write a pitch they liked. That was before I came on, so they were like, go ahead. On franchise type of pictures it sometimes doesn't hurt to have multiple writers on it, because one could be a sequel or could be something else.
While Brewer will be busy trying to shepherd his next major project to the big-screen, he's also working on smaller projects locally via BR2 and in conjunction with production partner and sometime assistant Erin Hagee. With BR2, Brewer is pursuing exactly the kind of strategies — smaller film projects and music-related ventures — he'll be proposing as a member of the Tennessee Film, Entertainment, and Music Commission.
Brewer has started a music publishing branch of BR2 with local music-industry vet Katherine Sage and financed the production of a solo album by local blues singer — and Hagee's husband — Jason Freeman, making back his production costs by placing a Freeman song in Footloose.
Meanwhile, BR2 is developing scripts with three local filmmakers — Alan Spearman, Morgan Jon Fox, and J. Michael McCarthy — for prospective small-budget features.