Coming Attractions: BP Oil Spill Set to Hit the Big Screen

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A guest post from TIME’s Tara Kelly:

With the one-year anniversary of BP’s Gulf of Mexico oil disaster nearly upon us, that can only mean one thing for filmmakers. The time is ripe for a Hollywood adaptation.

But forget corporate negligence or severe environmental damage. (Those don’t sell movies, they just grab headlines.) No, instead, producers have gone with the painfully predictable theme of good old fashion “heroism.”   How appropriate, if you try to forget this was one of the worst environmental disasters in U.S. history.

And who’s behind this oil drenched drama? Summit Entertainment, Participant Media and Imagenation Abu Dhabi have all acquired the film rights to the New York Times investigative piece “Deepwater Horizon’s Final Hour”, written by David Barstow, David Rohde and Stephanie Saul.

The film will recreate the moments before the explosion aboard BP’s Deepwater Horizon rig based on the harrowing 8,500 word New York Times article, according to Michael Gain, the president of Imagenation Abu Dhabi:

This powerful account truly represents the ideal aims of storytelling, where the search for the truth uncovers everyday heroism in the face of adversity, and so is destined to be an important film appealing to international audiences all over the world.

Although the film has no official start date and casting has yet to take place, there’s no doubt Welsh actor Michael Sheen gets Ecocentric’s vote for playing BP’s former CEO Tony Hayward. No one else could so convincingly echo Hayward’s ill-chosen words from BP’s darkest hour last May: “I’d like my life back.” (If he is busy, Charlie Sheen is probably available.)

And as for the profits made on the film, perhaps a donation to the alleged unpaid victims of the oil spill might be in order.

More from TIME on the oil spill:

The Meaning of the Mess

The Gulf Disaster: Whose Asses Need Kicking?