Leonardo DiCaprio is in talks to play a cult leader in the upcoming film “Jim Jones”
DiCaprio has played some weird real-life characters before, but this could be one of his most difficult roles yet.
According to Deadline, Leonardo DiCaprio is in final talks to star in the film Jim Jones. If he accepts the role, he will play the titular character, a 1970s religious cult leader who was responsible for the Jonestown mass suicide on November 18, 1978.
MGM has landed a deal for the movie, and the studio reportedly paid a seven-figure sum for the Scott Rosenberg script. Rosenberg, who co-wrote Venom and will serve as an executive producer on Jim Jones, is best known for co-writing the film Venom. Gone in 60 Seconds, Con Air, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, and its sequel, Jumanji: The Next Level, are among Rosenberg’s other writing credits. DiCaprio’s Appian Way Company will produce the film alongside Jennifer Davisson, who will assist in bringing this tragic event to light, which claimed the lives of over 900 people. The Revenant, Shutter Island, The Aviator, and The Wolf of Wall Street are just a few of the modern classics that Appian Way has assisted with the distribution of.
The Oscar winner has taken on a variety of gruelling parts, including a drug-addicted stock trader, a left-for-dead frontiersman, and a struggling actor desperate for any form of validation, but this could be one of the most difficult psychological roles he’s ever taken on. Jim Jones formed the Peoples Temple in Indianapolis in 1955, fully embracing Christian Socialism and proclaiming himself to be God while rejecting orthodox Christianity. Jonestown was built in Guyana in 1974, and he grew a following of people who wanted to live with him in this socialist paradise free of US government oppression.
After the US government sent Representative Leo Ryan to the site in November 1978 in response to claims of human rights abuses, Ryan and four other Jonestown defectors were shot and killed by Jones’ followers. Jones staged a mass murder-suicide of his followers by consuming Flavor Acid laced with cyanide after that awful occurrence. This resulted in the deaths of 918 people, including 304 children.
DiCaprio, who has established a career playing unstable individuals, is likely to be able to dig into the shadow of this awful crime. The Inception star was most recently seen in Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time in Hollywood and will next be seen in Adam McKay’s Netflix comedy Don’t Look Now. DiCaprio was nominated for seven Academy Awards before winning Best Actor for his portrayal in The Revenant in 2016.
Jim Jones does not yet have a release date.