Movie Fact #178 - March 26th, 2021
2016's Jackie went through an interesting background in regards to it's director and lead actress combinations. Originally, the film was announced in 2010 with Rachel Weisz starring in the titular role while Darren Aronofsky was set to direct and produce the film, from Noah Oppenheim's script. However, at the time. Weisz and Aronofsky were in a romantic relationship that then came to an end, thus leading to them both dropping out.
While, in the same year, Steven Spielberg showed interest in helming the film, nothing ever came of it. The film mired in development hell until September 2012 where Fox Searchlight Pictures started courting Natalie Portman to star in the film as Jacqueline "Jackie" Kennedy, hoping that her participation would bring back Aronofsky (As they had previously worked together in 2010's Black Swan). And despite this, it wasn't until February 2015, at the 65th Berlin International Film Festival in February 2015, that Aronofsky (Who was still a producer on the film) approached Pablo Larraín to direct the film, after Aronofsky was impressed by Larraín's film The Club.
Portman was confirmed to star and Larraín direct in May 2015 (Due to Portman's contract contingent on her approving the director). Still, Larraín was skeptical of why he was chosen by Aronofksy giving he was not fond of biopics and had never directed a film from a female's perspective. Nonetheless, he saw it as a challenge and the film ultimately was well-received, going on to be an award contender. Sometimes, a little time is all it takes to conjure great art. Stay tuned!