USS Indianapolis movie being produced by Robert Downey Jr.

Aug 2010
358
Nebraska
#1
From Russ Fischer at SlashFilm



"To movie fans, the WWII sinking of the USS Indianapolis is a familiar tale. Robert Shaw’s gruff, poetic account of the ship’s fate — and of the shark-infested waters into which the crew plunged after torpedoes broke the ship into pieces — is one of the crowning moments in Jaws. It’s one of the enduring film monologues, period. Want to see grown men cry? Play Shaw’s speech a couple times.
There is a newish wrinkle in the story of the Indianapolis, however, as in 1996 a young boy, inspired by Jaws, set out to exonerate Captain Charles McVay, who had been court-martialed for his role in the ship’s sinking. The boy was successful, and five years later the Captain’s record was amended. Now Robert Downey, Jr. and Susan Downey will produce a film with Warner Bros. about the boy’s efforts to clear the name of Captain McVay.
THR says that Robert Schenkkan, a writer on The Pacific, will script the film based on 11-year old Hunter Scott’s efforts to research and exonerate Captain McVay. Scott interviewed over a hundred survivors of the ship’s sinking and ultimately testified before Congress, after which Captain McVay’s record was changed.
So what happened in the waters not far from Guam on July 30, 1945? It is well established that, after the USS Indianapolis had delivered the components for the first atomic bomb, a Japanese sub fired six torpedoes at the ship, two of which hit and sank her. 1196 men were on board; 300 were taken down with the ship and 900 went into the water in the twelve minutes before she sank. They were in the water for five days, and by the time a full rescue had been implemented there were only 316 survivors.


USSIndianapolis.org recounts that “it did not become known until the early 1990s that – despite knowledge of the danger in its path – naval authorities at Guam had sent the Indianapolis into harm’s way without any warning, refusing her captain’s request for a destroyer escort, and leading him to believe his route was safe.”
There are conflicting reports of a distress signal actually being sent, and reportedly Naval intelligence intercepted a Japanese message reporting the sinking of the Indianapolis, but ignored it. Captian McVay was court-martialed regardless — the first Captain to face changes after more than 350 other ships had been lost in the war.
So this will be a difficult story to tel on several levels — in addition to the horrifying story of the hundreds of men who perished due to sharks, wounds and exposure, there is the complex tale of possible Naval malfeasance.
This is the latest of many efforts to fully tell the tale of the Indianapolis on film; Barry Levinson and Mel Gibson were once going to make a film, and Richard Kelly and J.J. Abrams have tried to make their own films. This could be the first since the ’71 TV film Mission of the Shark to tell the ship’s tragic story."-Russ Fischer



Link to site story and clip of Shaw's speech in Jaws.




This could be a great WWII movie if done right. So many stories out of that war that are overlooked because they are not as epic as D-Day or Pearl Harbor...
 
Jul 2010
7,575
Georgia, USA
#2
I will certainly look forward to this movie. McVay, according to his wife, spent his post service years in agony and despaired at the continual hate mail he received due to the hatchet job the Navy did on him. He finally ended it in 1968, I think, by shooting himself in his yard. I hope the accounts of his wife and family will be taken into consideration in the making of this movie in what ever genre it is produced. Thanks for the heads up, dschardt.
 
Feb 2011
13,599
Perambulating in St James' Park
#3
Isn't there a good movie about this already? Quite a modern one too if I remember. It's a story worth telling but since there's already a fairly modern movie about it Hollywood should concentrate on the lesser known US WWII actions like the subs in the Pacific of the defence of the Philippines.

EoR
 
Jul 2010
7,575
Georgia, USA
#4
Isn't there a good movie about this already? Quite a modern one too if I remember. It's a story worth telling but since there's already a fairly modern movie about it Hollywood should concentrate on the lesser known US WWII actions like the subs in the Pacific of the defence of the Philippines.

EoR
The only movie I saw on the Indianapolis was some blithering junk made for tv where the intelligence officer on board was the plot's bad guy who, just before discovery by searchers, gets taken off a raft by a flying great white shark and eaten. Ridiculous.
 
Jul 2011
5,938
Belgium
#5
The only movie I saw on the Indianapolis was some blithering junk made for tv where the intelligence officer on board was the plot's bad guy who, just before discovery by searchers, gets taken off a raft by a flying great white shark and eaten. Ridiculous.
Hollywood can get worse, such as a great shark eating a plane in mid-flight :)

Anyway, I'll probably never get to see that ready-for-TV movie here, so I'm definitely interested in this.
Plus, Robert Downey jr. is great. I just hope he won't limit to producing and that he'll also play a role in the movie.
 

tjadams

Ad Honoris
Mar 2009
25,362
Texas
#7
The only movie I saw on the Indianapolis was some blithering junk made for tv where the intelligence officer on board was the plot's bad guy who, just before discovery by searchers, gets taken off a raft by a flying great white shark and eaten. Ridiculous.
I have a sneaky feeling it will be much the same here.
This tragic event needs more and full coverage to honor the
supreme sacrifice those men made, but when Hollywood gets
its fingers on something real, often something different comes
out. Seems like a lot of 'filler' Hollywood will have to come up
with to make it two hours. Hope I'm wrong, but as Diddy wrote,
"It's Hollywood."
 
Feb 2011
13,599
Perambulating in St James' Park
#8
[ame="http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0102455/"]Mission of the Shark: The Saga of the U.S.S. Indianapolis (TV 1991) - IMDb@@AMEPARAM@@http://ia.media-imdb.com/images/M/MV5BMjQ5NjQ5OTE0M15BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwOTE1Nzg0MQ@@._V1._SX98_SY140_.jpg@@AMEPARAM@@BMjQ5NjQ5OTE0M15BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwOTE1Nzg0MQ@@@@AMEPARAM@@SX98@@AMEPARAM@@SY140[/ame]

I think this was the one I saw, it was a few years ago and I'd never heard of the USS Indianapolis before. I thought it was going to be about naval warfare so I was horrified to see what happened, I guess shark attacks are a part of naval warfare too though.

I don't think anything like that happened in the Atlantic or to the RN, I guess we'll never know. I imagine it was far more likely for survivors to die of exposure in the Atlantic/Arctic and Med than anything else.

EoR
 
Mar 2010
9,842
#9
Exonerated how????

There was a war going on and he didn't order his ship to zig-zag.

I totally fail to see how he could be exonerated for his failure to order such a simple and standard order.
 

diddyriddick

Historum Emeritas
May 2009
14,692
A tiny hamlet in the Carolina Sandhills
#10
Exonerated how????

There was a war going on and he didn't order his ship to zig-zag.

I totally fail to see how he could be exonerated for his failure to order such a simple and standard order.
Though there is some question as to how effective zig-zagging would have been, I'll give you the benefit of the doubt. My question is....Why wasn't the US Navy court martialed for their failure to account for the ship? Approximately 900 sailors went into the sea when the Indy sank-only 300 came out. Those poor SOBs were in the water for 4 days because the USN completely failed in their responsibility to the crew.
 

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