Yes, Let’s Definitely Make a Movie About the 2010 Gulf Oil Spill

Well, if they can make a found footage horror film about the Chernobyl disaster, why not launch a drama about the 2010 BP oil spill?

Deadline reports (via ComingSoon) that Summit Entertainment and Participant Media are currently negotiating with stuntman-turned-director Ric Roman Waugh to helm their film about the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill, titled Deepwater Horizon, after the massive oil rig that first exploded and then caught fire while drilling on the Macondo Prospect oil field, located off the southeast Louisiana coast. The disaster on the Deepwater then kicked off the oil spill, which was the largest accidental marine oil spill in the history of the petroleum industry, and is considered the second largest environmental disaster in U.S. history (behind the Dust Bowl). Sounds fun, right?

At the very least, screenwriter Matthew Sand‘s script is based on some promising material, a 2010 article from “The New York Times,” titled “Deepwater Horizon’s Final Hour” that was written by David Barstow, David Rohde, and Stephanie Saul (you can read the massive article if you click here). Like the article, the film will reportedly center on the oil rig workers from the Deepwater Horizon and their courage in the face of a unprecedented disaster. Eleven men died on the rig after the explosion.

The 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill continues to have an impact on the Gulf region to this day – the sort of impact that we might not fully understand, in terms of both the environment and the economics, for many years to come. Certainly, a film about the disaster will come complete with some stunning visuals, and there’s obviously room for lots of heroism, but it still feels a touch distasteful to capitalize on the disaster with a film. Perhaps Summit and Participant will consider donating some of their box office take to the families and businesses devastated by the disaster?

Kate is an entertainment and culture writer and editor living in New York City. She is also a contributing writer for,,, Vulture,,, The Dissolve, Screen Crush, New York Daily News, Mental Floss, and amNY. Her previous work can also be found at MSN Movies, Boxoffice Magazine, and She lives her life like a French movie, Steve.

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