Deepwater Horizon (film)
|Directed by||Peter Berg|
|Story by||Matthew Sand|
|Based on||Deepwater Horizon’s Final Hours
by David Barstow
|Music by||Steve Jablonsky|
|Distributed by||Summit Entertainment|
|Box office||$32.7 million|
Deepwater Horizon is a 2016 American biographical disaster film directed byPeter Berg, written by Matthew Sand and Matthew Michael Carnahan, and starring an ensemble cast including Mark Wahlberg, Kurt Russell, John Malkovich, Gina Rodriguez, Dylan O’Brien and Kate Hudson. It is based on the 2010 Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
Principal photography began on April 27, 2015 in New Orleans, Louisiana. It premiered at the 2016 Toronto International Film Festival and was theatrically released in the United States on September 30, 2016. It received generally positive reviews and has grossed over $32 million worldwide so far.
On April 20, 2010, blowout and explosion on the oil rig Deepwater Horizonirreparably damages and sinks the oil rig, releasing thousands of gallons of petroleum into the Gulf of Mexico in the U.S.’ worst ever oil spill. Michael ‘Mike’ Williams, and Caleb Holloway, two of more than 120 crew members on board, help rescue some of their ship mates, while his family back home deals with the fallout of the disaster.
- Mark Wahlberg as Mike Williams
- Kurt Russell as Jimmy “Mr. Jimmy” Harrell
- John Malkovich as Donald Vidrine
- Gina Rodriguez as Andrea Fleytas
- Dylan O’Brien as Caleb Holloway
- Kate Hudson as Felicia Williams
- Ethan Suplee as Jason Anderson
- Henry Frost as Shane Roshto
- Jeremy Sande as Adam Weise
- David Maldonado as Capt. Curt Kuchta
On March 8, 2011, it was announced that Summit Entertainment, Participant Media and Image Nation acquired the film rights to The New York Times‘article Deepwater Horizon’s Final Hours written by David Barstow, David S. Rohde and Stephanie Saul, released on December 25, 2010, about the 2010Deepwater Horizon explosion and subsequent oil spill. Matthew Sand was set to write the screenplay while Lorenzo di Bonaventura was in talks to produce the film with his Di Bonaventura Pictures banner. Summit and Participant Media/Imagenation were also said to be financing the film. On acquiring the article to develop a film, President of Participant Media, Ricky Strauss said,
This is a perfect fit for us–a suspenseful and inspiring real-life account of everyday people whose values are tested in the face of an impending environmental disaster.
On July 24, 2012, Ric Roman Waugh was in talks with the studios to direct the film, Mark Vahradian was also set to produce the film along with Bonaventura, Lions Gate Entertainment also joined the project to produce and distribute. On July 11, 2014, it was announced that All Is Lost‘s director J. C. Chandor had been hired to direct the film, whose screenplay’s first draft was written by Sand and then Matthew Michael Carnahan wrote the second draft. In early October, it was confirmed that Summit would distribute the film, not Lionsgate. On January 30, 2015, it was reported that Lone Survivordirector Peter Berg had replaced Chandor to re-team with Wahlberg for the film. Chandor exited due to some creative differences.
On August 19, 2014, casting began with actor Mark Wahlberg added for the lead role in the film. Gina Rodriguez was set on March 18, 2015 to play a woman named Andrea Fleytas, who was on the bridge onboard the Deepwater Horizon at the time of the blowout and frantically tried to contact the Coast Guard, where Wahlberg would play Mike Williams, an electronics technician on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig. Dylan O’Brien was in talks to play Caleb Holloway reported byDeadline on April 10, 2015. Kurt Russell also joined the film on the same day O’Brien was in talks, Russell’s role was unspecified yet. Soon after, John Malkovich was confirmed cast as a BP representative who fatally underestimates the dangers of working on the rig. Kate Hudson was announced as a cast member in May, 2015, and will play the wife of Wahlberg’s character; her role will be her first on-screen pairing with Russell, her stepfather. Wahlberg’s character was revealed in May 2015, that he would be playing the real-life hero Mike Williams.
Principal photography on the film began on April 27, 2015. It was later officially announced by Lionsgate on May 18, 2015, that the filming had begun in New Orleans, Louisiana. Scenes at the BP offices are to be filmed in Liverpool, England in September 2015, as it also often doubles as New York.
The film cost a total of $156 million to produce, with $122 million spent in Louisiana. As a result, Lionsgate (the studio financing the film) will receive a $37.7 million subsidy from the state under Louisiana’s film incentive program. Later estimates put the amount at $110 million.
Deepwater Horizon had its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival on September 13 where it received a standing ovation from audiences after the screening. It opened in theaters on September 30, 2016, distributed by Summit Entertainment in the United States and Canada and by Lionsgate Entertainment internationally.