When James Mangold’s Ford v. Ferrari arrived in theaters last year, with Michael Mann on board as executive producer, I had assumed that was his acceptance of passing the baton on his long-in-development Ferrari project (which also had Christian Bale attached at one point) to a story of a different stripe. Well, I’m glad to be proven wrong as Mann’s Ferrari film is moving full steam ahead and is now planning a shoot next spring.
Deadline reports that Hugh Jackman is still attached to this film, which is currently being handled by STX in terms of international sales. Jackman will star as Ferrari founder Enzo Ferrari in a script polished by Mann originally from Troy Kennedy Martin (The Italian Job). Set in the summer of 1957, it’s been described as a Godfather-esque tale in which the car company was on the verge of going broke and Enzo and his wife Laura’s marriage was on the rocks. The film’s main setpiece will be the 1957 Mille Miglia, covering 1,000 miles, which determined the future of both Ferrari and his company.
“The real power of this piece is in the emotionally charged lives of these people in complex, extreme circumstances,” Mann said, who has been developing the film for decades, and plans to build a series of era-specific replica cars. “In addition, there is the explosive power and lethal beauty of racing. It has a great drama at its core and that’s why Ferrari stayed with me.”
With Ford v. Ferrari making over $225 million worldwide, one imagines it was a boost for Mann to get this project to move forward. In the meantime, Mann was in production on his HBO Max pilot Tokyo Vice pilot when the pandemic hit, which we will assume undergo recasting after the recent sexual assault allegations against star Ansel Elgort. Mann is also planning to return to the world of Heat for a prequel novel and film.