The Oscar-nominated documentary “Fire of Love” is getting the narrative remake treatment.
The acclaimed non-fiction movie, concerning the scientific research and on-the-job romance of French volcanologist filmmakers Katia and Maurice Krafft, will become a live-action narrative feature film. Searchlight Pictures snagged remake rights to the acclaimed documentary, which debuted at the 2022 Sundance Film Festival before being acquired by National Geographic Documentary Films.
Searchlight will finance and distribute, with Jamie Patricof’s Hunting Lane developing and producing. “Fire of Love” director/producer Sara Dosa and producer Shane Boris are attached to produce this version as well, while producer Ina Fichman will be an executive producer. Other executive producers include Josh Braun and Ben Braun from Submarine Deluxe, and Greg Boustead and Jessica Harrop from Sandbox Films.
There is no word on who will direct the picture or anything regarding casting.
The Oscar frontrunner features visually spectacular footage of the scientist couple facing down the dangers of volcanos exploding and spewing lava. They died together amid a volcanic eruption in 1991. Dosa and her team assembled the documentary from thousands of photographs and hundreds of hours of footage from the Krafft’s archives. With a soundtrack by Nicholas Godin of Air and narration from Miranda July, “Fire of Love” was released theatrically in 28 countries, earning $1.1 million domestically courtesy of NEON.
The currently untitled feature film will follow in the footsteps of “Our Brand is Crisis,” “Lords of Dogtown” and “Rescue Dawn” as feature film versions of actual events which were previously detailed in buzzy documentaries.
It can be argued that adapting documentaries is one of the few ways, like adapting popular foreign-language films into English-language features with Hollywood movie stars, that filmmakers and studios can justify green-lighting a non-franchise, star-driven studio programmer these days.
A pure original may be an unthinkable risk, but a new-to-you American adaptation of “Ambulance,” “Infernal Affairs,” “In Order of Disappearance” or “The Intouchables” has the alleged protection of established content or slightly pre-sold IP. Likewise, “The Rescue,” “Marwencol” or “The Times of Harvey Milk” can become “Thirteen Lives,” “Welcome to Marwen” or “Milk” with something resembling a commercial safety net.