Blue Caprice, the movie based on the D.C. area sniper events, is receiving a boost. It was just last September when I blogged how Shadow and Act caught wind that the movie is in production and presented a 34 second trailer. Since that time, no new info had been released, including an official release date. Now Shadow and Act is reporting that the film is receiving help from the Independent Filmmaker Project (IFP) via their IFP Narrative Labs. Blue Caprice, directed by Alexandre Moors, is one of ten films selected for IFP Narrative Labs. The initiative assists with the completion, marketing and distribution of a film. Perhaps this is why we haven’t heard anything else about the film as production may have been stalled and needed a final push – - my own speculation.
Shadow and Act also caught up with Isaiah Washington, who is playing the role of John Allen Muhammad. Of his role Washington says the following:
“I’m a human being, I’m going to have to tell the truth and bring honesty to the script, but, I can say that the best thing has been two books I read; one by Russian author from the 19th century Fyodor Dostoyevsky called Notes from the Underground and the book Scared Silent from John Allen Muhammad’s former wife Mildred Muhammad. Hopefully, it [Blue Caprice] will be very thought provoking, very intense, funny. Hopefully, people will walk out of the theater really confused about how they feel over what they thought they knew about this man because, what we see is ‘wow, this man is also trying to be a good father to his 3 kids and they were taken way from him. Now…does that excuse his behavior? Nah! But I will say that although you may not agree, hopefully it will help you understand.” – Isaiah Washington to Shadow and Act
Washington also briefly talks about his costar Tequan Richmond, who plays the impressionable Lee Boyd Malvo, the misguided teen under Muhammad’s wing. Read the complete Shadow and Act article here.
If I should see the movie, I’m not sure how I will feel about Muhammad. A year or two ago I did happen to see Mildred Muhammad speak at a domestic violence awareness event. What I appreciated about her talk was the fact that she humanized her ex-husband. He wasn’t the full on monster or psycho that a lot of us immediately called him out on. A lot of his issues did pertain to his mental health, especially due to his military experience. Point blank, he was trained to kill. The man that she once loved had lost his mind and was forever gone in every sense of the word.
I don’t believe she was looking for sympathy for Muhammad, because she was looking for a sense of peace during her time with him, when he turned violent, up to his last days. He terrorized her and their children. I do believe it’s as how Washington pointed out… that people come away with a sense of understanding. Muhammad was very complicated. Still, it’s not a justification for his actions. I don’t think there will ever be a justified response, but how do you deal with someone who is battling serious mental health issues?
Before, I doubted that I would look at the film, for the sake of saving myself from relieving that nightmare. As I stated in my last post about it, the sniper attack happened a year after 9-11. The D.C. area was still in recovery mode. Reliving all of that, on film, maybe a bit much, especially for the families of Muhammad and Malvo’s victims. However, after seeing Mildred and reading Washington’s comments, I guess in a way I am looking forward to film’s release now, just to see how Moors will capture both the human and monster side of Muhammad.