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Scott takes on eighties drug runners

Tony Scott & Fox 2000 are teaming up for a new biopic about Don Aronow, the inventor of the cigarette boat. Scott will helm from a script by Michael A.M Lerner. Scott's own Scott Free (his production company with brother Ridley) will produce. Scott will first helm The Taking of Pelham 1, 2, 3– a remake of the 1974 classic, starring frequent collaborator Denzel Washington for Columbia Pictures.

For those not in the know, Aronow's cigarette boats- immortalized on the TV series Miami Vice were a favorite of Columbian drug runners, who used them to import coke into Miami during the eighties. Aronow eventually got a $20 Million contract to build boats for U.S customs officers which were used to catch the drug runners. In 1987 Aronow was gunned down in a mob style hit. Two men, including Ben Kramer a suspected drug runner who had once tried to buy Aronow's powerboat racing team, were eventually tied to the hit.

To me, Scott seems like a perfect fit for this material. Granted, his previous biopic Domino was not received warmly, but I truly believe that film in under-appreciated. While not faithful at all to Domino Harvey's real life, it was never really intended to be a straight biopic. Sadly, Harvey died midway through production, which tainted the film in many viewers eyes.

Considering that the film is being written by a former Newsweek correspondent (scribe Lerner covered the war in Lebenon and turned his experiences into an indie feature called Deadlines, which he also directed) and that the film also has the blessing of Aronow's surviving son Michael- this project will likely be a lot more straightforward than Domino. The material is extremely compelling and is a great fit for someone like Scott, who spent part of the eighties working with producer Don Simpson- so he probably knows a thing or two about eighties drug culture. It'll be interesting to see how the film is cast.

Bring it on Tony!

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