Hooniverse Asks- What Car-Related Tale Has Hollywood Given the Short-Shrift?

This week you have proven that the Hollywood film industry has given us many iconic motorcycles and cars, and many of those were the centers of the celluloid drama that unfolded on the screen, or TV sets nationwide. But that being said, what car-related story hasn’t yet received an appropriate Hollywood treatment?
NASCAR has had a couple of opportunities – the Tony Scott slick-fest Days of Thunder and the execrable Stroker Ace, which was based on the vastly superior book, Stand On It. Sure there was Grand Prix and Le Mans, but what has Hollywood done for us lately? Back in the ’70s, Alex Haley’s book Wheels was turned into a mini-series, most notable for the gull wing AMX built for the show than its snooze-fest drama. Since then we’ve had Blue Collar (awesome) and Gung Ho (embarrassingly bad) which have featured the manufacturing of autos as a central conceit. As it has been one of the most influential factors in our nation’s – and the world’s – industrial growth and the development of the middle class, you’d think it would have provided greater fodder.
So racing and building haven’t really gotten the spotlight they deserved, what about jobs where cars and trucks play a big roll? Even there, they haven’t received much of a starring role. They Drive By Night and Mother, Jugs and Speed seem prominent examples, and they’re separated by 40 years. So what auto story do you think could be Hollywood’s next big thing? Or at least would be something you’d plunk don your twelve-fifty for?
Image source: [Uniquescreenwriting.com]

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52 responses to “Hooniverse Asks- What Car-Related Tale Has Hollywood Given the Short-Shrift?”

  1. tonyola Avatar

    Didn't we cover something similar to this not long back? My answer would be the same – the strange saga of Elizabeth Carmichael (motordom's most famous transsexual) and the Dale car.
    <img src="http://www.unsolved.com/ajaxfiles/images/cases/sol_elizabeth_carmichael1.jpg"&gt;
    Another possibility – the 1955 LeMans tragedy.

    1. Peter Tanshanomi Avatar
      Peter Tanshanomi

      Yes, a month ago. But to clarify, I think that was asking for a specific person or storyline, whereas, given Robert's examples — racing, trucks, manufacturing — (I think) he's asking here about a general area of motordom.

    2. IronBallsMcG Avatar

      Two excellent choices.

  2. west_coaster Avatar

    Wasn't somebody working on a movie about John DeLorean? Done right*, it could be a great film.
    *Then again, the dopes who run the movie studios would probably ruin it.

    1. OA5599 Avatar

      <img src="http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_NdGAi6Lhpjk/Sl1DYeSUZOI/AAAAAAAAAIg/r-3pRw5dK1U/s400/delorean3.jpg&quot; width=500>
      Charlie Sheen would be perfect in the film.

  3. IronBallsMcG Avatar

    There's a couple of bio-pic/documentaries I'd like to see done.
    The life, and to a lesser extent death, of Mickey Thompson needs thorough coverage.
    My love of two wheels demands a wide release of a John Britten movie.

  4. OA5599 Avatar

    <img src="http://www.allcarcentral.com/Cheetah/Cheeta_1965_APB0225_Pebble-Beach-2008.jpg&quot; width=500>
    I think the Cheetah story would resonate much of the same vibe as the Tucker movie.
    And the cheater story would make a great biography.
    <img src="http://cdn.allleftturns.com/www/sites/default/files/articles/Smokey%20Yunick.jpg&quot; width=500>

  5. Alff Avatar

    I think it's time that Hollhwood expose the truth about our domestic auto industry buying and burying the water-powered car.

    1. west_coaster Avatar

      Not to mention the story of the guy who invented the 100-mpg carburetor!

    2. IronBallsMcG Avatar

      The movie was already filmed but mysteriously disappeared during post-production.
      I had one heck of a time getting this comment to appear. That proves something's going on.

      1. Tomsk Avatar

        This guy says he worked as a gaffer on it.
        <img src="http://derekpgilbert.com/wp-content/uploads/tin-foil-hat.jpg&quot; />

  6. Peter Tanshanomi Avatar
    Peter Tanshanomi

    Karting. I have yet to see a story about guys who race go-karts.
    I even have a great idea for a chase scene: as the baddies are chasing the protagonist through traffic, he crashes his truck in an intersection smash-up. Unwilling to give up, he pulls his kart out of the bed and cleverly uses the kart's small size to to zip under semi-trailers, down drainage culverts and through a streefront pizza parlor to escape.

    1.  Avatar
    2. joshuman Avatar

      Just like this but with more baddies.
      [youtube 0dGoZs_tZh8 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0dGoZs_tZh8 youtube]

    3. OA5599 Avatar

      [youtube MytfhzcSF-Y http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MytfhzcSF-Y youtube]

  7. Alff Avatar

    Autocrossing. It could be called "Solo", and Paul Reubens could play the lead.

  8. P161911 Avatar

    This was actually a 30min cartoon once:
    <img src="http://www.joeldouek.com/otmny/img/projects/large/0020.png"width=500&gt;

  9. Maxichamp Avatar

    The career of short-statured Nick Heidfeld. Tom Cruise can play him.

  10. Jimmy7 Avatar

    Tim Richmond, the James Hunt of NASCAR. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tim_Richmond
    Also, James Hunt.
    Lance Reventlow.
    Peter Revson.
    And I'd like to make a movie about Fangio's kidnapping by Cuban revolutionaries.

  11. Peter Tanshanomi Avatar
  12. Feds_II Avatar

    I'd like to see the "auto safety" lobby get the Michael Moore treatment. A picture ripping red light cameras, radar traps, and low speed limits as nothing but cash grabs, while spitting out stats about the number of soldiers/babies/polar bears/baby polar bear soldiers who die every year because we are all forced to drag around 100's of extra lbs of metal/airbags/explosive seatbelt pre-tensioners, etc. that the odds say we'll never use.
    Plus, more scenes with the lady selling rabbits as pets or food.

    1. P161911 Avatar

      Sounds like a job for John Stossel.

      1. jjd241 Avatar

        Stossel would just end up getting bitch slapped again…
        [youtube zrX9Ca7LSyQ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zrX9Ca7LSyQ youtube]

    2. Black Steelies Avatar

      That would be perfect because no one knows what it's like to drag 100s of extra lbs around quite like Moore.

      1. facelvega Avatar

        It's hard to resist second helpings of the rabbit stew. So fresh!

  13. Rust-MyEnemy Avatar

    I think Unsafe At Any Speed would be a fantastic premise for a movie.
    I'd cast Jack Black in the Nader role.

    1. Black Steelies Avatar

      I always thought he looked more like a Billy Bob Thorton, but Jack really is more Nader-y.

  14. joshuman Avatar

    It is not from Hollywood which is probably why I know I'm looking forward to seeing Senna.
    [youtube JOzq927y15o http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JOzq927y15o youtube]

    1. engineerd Avatar

      You and me both! Any word on when we can get our hands on it?

  15. Black Steelies Avatar

    A stunt driver documentary or bio on Buzz Bundy. Just read about him in one of the recent Hot Rod mag's. He worked a lot of stunt shows back in the day and is a stunt driving legend, working on Knight Rider and Dukes of Hazzard. That means he's also directly responsible for destroying countless Chargers.

    1. Peter Tanshanomi Avatar
      Peter Tanshanomi

      <img src="http://images.hemmings.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/07/SIA-ThrillShow_lede.jpg"&gt;
      There's got to a be a hell of a lot of great stories behind Joie Chitwood's troupe.

  16. Smells_Homeless Avatar

    I'd be thrilled to death if they'd just do a DVD of "Wheels of Fire" from 1973. They showed it on Speed (back before the NASCAR conversion) once that I know of, but I couldn't get a recording of it.

  17. Jim-Bob Avatar

    Hypermiling. Imagine a cross country race between two tatooed thugs, one in a Honda Insight one that's been modified with extra batteries and solar panels and the other in a Geo Metro that has been re-powered by a Suzuki Wagon R's 660cc drivetrain with a custom low final drive, battling for supremacy to see who can go the farthest average number of miles per gallon of fuel. It would be sort of like Two Lane Blacktop except for the excitement and drag racing. It would end like that film too, with the film melting as they filled their fuel tanks at a gas station. After all, in the end it doesn't matter how much gas you saved as long as you saved gas.

  18. OA5599 Avatar

    The Uwe Gemballa murder might make an interesting film, presuming you could find someone to come forward with facts.

    1. dwegmull Avatar

      The lack of facts has never stopped Hollywood before…

  19. Peter Tanshanomi Avatar
    Peter Tanshanomi

    Meyers did copyright his design, and attempted to enforce it. The presiding judge in the civil trial that blew it up was a clueless boob that knew zip about automotive construction and design.
    But yea, would make a great biopic.

  20. facelvega Avatar

    Seems obvious to me, a buddy film about or at least set at the 24 hours of LeMons. Who would play Murilee Martin?

      1. engineerd Avatar

        It's quite uncanny.

    1. BЯдΖǐL-ЯЄРΘЯΤЄЯ Avatar

      She should play her self..
      <img src="http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51RGDKKTeFL._SS500_.jpg"&gt;

      1. facelvega Avatar

        for innocent readers scanning this thread, the actual Murilee Martin:
        <img src="http://cache.jalopnik.com/assets/resources/2007/10/Murilee_Impala_1990.jpg"&gt;

        1. Alff Avatar

          You can't fool me – that's Phineas Freak.

        2. dwegmull Avatar

          Thank you for the PSA.

        3. facelvega Avatar

          And a bunch of guys at LeMons trying to curry favor by dressing like M.M.:
          <img src="http://www.murileemartin.com/LeMonsCostumes2010/2010_LeMons_Costumes-105.jpg&quot; width="600">

  21. BriantheHoon Avatar

    Il Commendatorre vs. The Deuce and the birth of the Ford GT. Just give a good screenwriter this to read:
    <img src="http://www.nbcuniversalstore.com/img/product/resized/623/00108856-448623_600.jpg?k=d493c4d7&pid=108856&s=catl
    Also, what happened to Intense Debate?

    1. BriantheHoon Avatar

      Oops, trying that again …

  22. engineerd Avatar

    I think it would be cool to see more Truth In 24 or Love the Beast types of movies/documentaries. Maybe they could follow Flying Lizard Motorsports around for a season in ALMS. Another one could feature the preparation of a NASCAR speccar for the Daytona 500 and all the other shenanigans that precede that yawn fest race.
    Oooh…I'd also like to see an exposé on the inventors of the French rally robot we call Sebastian Loeb.

  23. Kah Avatar

    Australy Wood ..Mad Max 4, George Miller can let Gibson go he has gotten to crazy put someone like Hugh Jackman in as Max and let the post-apocalyptic good times roll bring back “Dog"

  24. Rockford_Brodie Avatar

    that's only because he just found out what powered the DMC-12.
    "PRV, Dad…really?! At least you could get a proper engine in a Bricklin."

  25. scroggzilla Avatar

    Instead of remaking Cannonball Run, which IMHO is a gawdawful movie, how about telling the true story of the Cannonball Baker Sea to Shining Sea Memorial Trophy Dash. Use this as a basis and do not change the names to protect the innocent.
    <img src="http://storedaily.com/pictures/manuals/cannonball-americas-greatest-o.jpg"&gt;

    1. SSurfer321 Avatar

      good book. read it a few years ago.

  26. Eggwich James Dio Avatar
    Eggwich James Dio

    Bob Lutz. Just a day in the life.