You know, we give Brett Ratner a lot of heat around here — and he can certainly make it easy — but in the case of “I Want My MTV: The Uncensored Story Of The Music Video Revolution,” this is actually a project perfectly suited for the producer and director.
Variety reports that Ratner’s Rat Entertainment and Sony will be teaming up to bring the much-talked-about book to the big screen. Written by music journalists Craig Marks and Rob Tannenbaum, ‘I Want My MTV’ is a chronicle of the hugely influential channel, from its earliest days as a groundbreaking music network, through its expansion in the ’90s that saw original programming run side by side with videos, up to today.
It’s ripe material for the big screen, with music likely a big part of what makes this attractive. But we also hope the film goes into the boardrooms as well, and doesn’t shy away from some of the controversies the channel generated, particularly in the early days when they backed off playing black artists. There is no doubt that the channel was a major player in how music reverberated through pop culture, and their expanding shows into the realms of alternative rock, hip-hop and even live concerts, matched the growing interests of their viewers.
And really, Ratner is a good guy for this. His numerous entertainment world connections aside, he started out a music video helmer and among his resume are two of the ’90s biggest hits — Wu-Tang Clan‘s “Triumph” (phenomenal video, easily the best they ever did) and Mariah Carey‘s “Heartbreaker.” He knows that world fairly well. For now, he’ll only produce, though he is eyeing the director’s chair, and should the script from Jody Lambert (“People Like Us“) turn out to be great, we hope he decides to do it. It’s frankly the most promising project he’s attached himself to in a long, long time.
On Sony’s end, we can only guess they’re hoping for a “The Social Network“-style story, featuring a popular interactive brand with cultural resonance, making for a great big-screen story. And the potential is there, so let’s see how this plays out.