Alright, Hollywood. It’s time for some director to man-up and possibly ruin his career by helming the blacklisted Rupert Murdoch screenplay. What’s the worst the ultra-powerful News Corp CEO can do? Erase your MySpace profile? Block your access to Fuel TV? Spread vicious lies about your alleged addiction to clown porn via Fox News, the New York Post and the Wall Street Journal? Okay, maybe there’s some legitimate cause for trepidation.
Here’s what we’ve learned about the script Murdoch by Jesse Armstrong (a writer on the hilarious Brit-com Peep Show), which Forbes got ahold of, and it’s being buzzed about around the not-entirely News Corp owned interwebs. It’s an “intimate family drama” full of good old fashioned family backstabbing, based on quasi-actual events:
“Murdoch” takes place over the course of a single day, the Australian-born mogul’s 78th birthday. His third wife, Wendi, has organized a surprise party. Murdoch uses the occasion to make a request of his four adult children: that they agree to alter the terms of the family trust to give his two young daughters from his third marriage voting rights. The children — James, Elisabeth, Lachlan and Prudence — discuss and argue over the request, scheme against each other, form alliances and repeatedly get manipulated by their father. Ultimately, they reject his appeal, each for his or her own reasons.
So not only is it about Murdoch himself, who in one scene calls up Steve Jobs to tell him how much the iPod sucks just to show-off in front of his kids, but the film portrays Murdoch’s family as what sounds like contestants on “Survivor.” Yup, I can see why producers are lining up for this one.