Carl Sagan is a total badass. An astronomer, astrophysicist, and cosmologist, he was also a writer, a media personality, and dedicated to brining science to the masses in a way that was fun, informative, and accessible those of us without advanced degrees. And now he’s getting a biopic.
Variety reports that Warner Bros. is in the process of developing a drama, which doesn’t have a title just yet, about the late scientist, and they’re teaming with a couple of people from Sagan’s past to do so. There are no plot details, but given that the film is about the man and his life, it’s probably a safe bet that the story has something to do with those. We’ll have to wait and see whether this is birth-to-death kind of biopic, like so many, or if it focuses on one or a few key events in his life.
According to the report, Lynda Obst and Ann Druyan are on board to produce the picture, and both have links to Carl Sagan. Obst, who produced Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar last year, also produced Contact in 1997, and you may recall that the Jodie Foster and Matthew McConaughey-starring sci-fi film was based on Sagan’s novel. Sagan himself passed away the year before, but the film was dedicated to him.
Druyan was actually married to Sagan for 15 years, from 1981 until his death in 1996. Also an executive producer on Contact, she recently won an Emmy for writing and producing 2014’s Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey with Neil deGrasse Tyson, an update of Sagan’s own science-based series, Cosmos: A Personal Voyage, a series that covered a wide range of scientific topics, from terrestrial matters to deep space.
In addition to his campaign to popularize science and educate, which included, beyond just Cosmos, appearances on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, Sagan spent much of his life and career looking into the possibilities of extraterrestrial life. He even created messages sent into space with the Pioneer and Voyager spacecraft that were designed to be interpreted and understood by any intelligent life that might happen upon them out there in the void.
Right now there is no word on a timeline for this biopic, and while there is no director involved at this point, there is a writer in place. Zach Dean, who only has the 2012 crime thriller Deadfall on his resume, has been tapped with writing the script. We’ll have to wait and see how all of these pieces come together, but you can bet we’ll be there to watch a movie about Carl Sagan.