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The Failures of... Stanley Kubrick - Short Script Gods
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The Failures of… Stanley Kubrick


Even the greatest director of all time failed.  And I’m not talking about when he was struggling to make it, I’m talking about when he was in his prime.  When everybody on Earth was saying “yes, Mr.Kubrick” to him for anything.  Can I have all the candy in your pockets?  Yes, Mr.Kubrick.  Can I sleep with your wife?  Yes, Mr.Kubrick.  Can I sleep with your dog?  Definitely, Mr.Kubrick.  Those fantasies you have about how you’re struggling and the guys on top get anything they want is about to be eliminated.

In 1968, after Kubrick did a movie called “2001: A Space Odyssey,” which made boat loads of money, won him an Oscar, made him the most demanded director in Hollywood, the man could do anything — anything — he wanted.  He chose “Napoleon.”  The movie was immediately financed.  Stanley K. professed this would be “the best movie ever made.”  He wrote a screenplay.  He cast Jack Nicholson and Audrey Hepburn.  He got the Romanian Army to loan him 50,000 soldiers.

And the thing was shut down.  A director named Sergei Bondarchuk is partially responsible for this.  He made a couple Napoleon movies, one called “Waterloo”, which not only tanked but Waterlooed Kubrick’s dream project.  It made such little money, and Kubrick’s project cost so much money, that the plug was pulled on “Napoleon.”


Stanley K. used the freight train of research to make eventually make “Barry Lyndon” but along with Jodorowski’s Dune, “Napoleon” was considered the greatest film never made.  Point is, he kept making movies, great movies like “A Clockwork Orange” and “The Shining.”  So what?  So he never got to make his dream fucking project.  He kept the train moving.  Okay, cut to today…


… March 2013, Spielberg pillaged the Kubrick estate and became hellbent on making this “Napoleon” project as an HBO mini-series.  He enlisted “True Detective Season One’s” Cary Fukunaga.  Even beyond his grave, Kubrick keeps going.

Written by: Norith Soth

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