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Ben Affleck or George Clooney, A Monumental Man Dilemma

Which Actor / Director / Producer Works Best For The Next Epic WWII Script?

Boomerpdx Blogger As Young Man Holding The Magna Carta

Boomerpdx Blogger As Young Museum Man Holding The Monumental Magna Carta

Here on the outskirts of civilization the choice of who would do Flying Home justice grows more complicated.

Both Affleck and Clooney won Oscars for producing Argo. Both know Hollywood inside out.

George seems to like people for who they are, not what they can do for him.

Ben gets the same nod. Instead of cut-throat power players, they seem like guys who know how to play the game right on both sides of the camera.

In my personal fantasy league of movie makers, they are pick #1 and #1-A in either order.

But there is an edge. George Clooney’s The Monuments Men strikes a chord like no other.

Art treasures and historical artifacts in general mean more to me than the average Joe. It happens when you spend twenty years with museum artifacts held by the Oregon Historical Society.

The stuff that makes the cut from trash to treasure finds a home in museum archives for eternity. Or so you hope. When you realize the importance of everyday stuff a bells goes off. Everyday material from a hundred years ago is rare today, the same as our stuff will be rare a hundred years down the road.

Even in a disposable society, not everything goes to the landfill. Material culture works like that.

Trash from six hundred years ago, or a thousand or two thousand years ago, has already stood the test of time. If it’s still around, then it’s important enough to protect. Shards from Grecian urns still tell a story. Da Vinci’s warm ups and throw-aways are museum worthy.

Like the saying in real estate about a finite amount of land, no one is making more da Vincis.

After watching Argo I was sure Ben was the right guy for Flying Home. He knows how to handle a film with huge scope and international locations. Flying Home moves from Boston to England, Hawaii to Boston, then New Jersey to the War in the Pacific. Ben’s got the chops to handle the logistics. As an actor and director, he knows how to create moments that matter, images that stick in our memories.

Then here comes George Clooney and The Monuments Men. One shot of Nazis hitting Renaissance paintings with a flame thrower did it. As if book burning wasn’t enough, now it’s paintings. You’ve got to believe the oil and canvas made for incredible flames.

Using fire as a metaphor is the best way to show the German attitude in the 1940’s. First they round up the Jews and pack them on trains headed for death camp fires, then burn their art collections. Could it be any more traumatic? The answer is always yes.

George gets the historical edge. For any museum man who’s held priceless stuff, seeing artwork in flames feels like a death blow. It reminds us of the loot-fest in Iraq, and the artillery shells the Taliban used to blow up the Buddha statues carved into a mountainside in Afghanistan.

If making the movie wasn’t enough, Mr. Clooney takes it to whole new level with There you’ll find a phone number to call with any info on stolen art as well as a gallery of missing paintings. It feels like a service to mankind with the upcoming movie as prelude. A link to the recent discovery of looted material in Munich keeps the Nazi art fetish current.

Showing a sure hand on an untold story from WWII in Europe, he’d be right at home with an untold story from the War in the Pacific. Flying Home characters include:

  • A war profiteering industrialist father.
  • A right-hand-man groomed as the son daddy wished he had.
  • The genius yet grounded son he does have.
  • An old professor/mentor.
  • An opportunistic lifer Army sergeant.
  • A teacher saving her Japanese students from their own soldiers’ rampage.

Part Good Will Hunting, part Titanic, and part Forrest Gump, Flying Home shows the triumph of the human spirit against the worst warfare ever invented by man. The bad guys are horrible and the good guys do horrible things in response.

The script for Flying Home was written and re-written in a class with Cynthia Whitcomb, notes from Script Shark, and a top ten percent mention with notes from Bluecat.

Ben? George? You did a great thing working together to give us Argo. The Monuments Men has a similar feel. Because of that, Flying Home needs your vision.

The world of movie fans deserve your best. And you deliver.




About David Gillaspie


  1. I couldn’t resist commenting. Well written!

    • David Gillaspie says:

      Don’t fight the comment urge to hard, Jerrod. And if you feel like joining boomerpdx, don’t fight that either. lol

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