If you haven’t seen Mike Nichols’ epic 1970 adaptation of Joseph Heller’s novel, then you’re seriously missing out. The incredibly dark-humoured movie stars Alan Arkin as Capt. John Yossarian, a man desperately battling the insanity of war, as well as the war itself (World War II in this instance). It has an impressive cast, including Jon Voight, Bob Balaban, Anthony Perkins, Art Garfunkel and Orson Welles.
Catch-22 is up there with other intelligent, anti-war satires like Robert Altman’s equally epic M*A*S*H (1970) and more recently Starship Troopers (1997), and it should be on the national curriculum. The phrase itself – in essence, meaning a no-win situation – actually originates from Heller’s novel.
Now George Clooney, a man with just the right mentality, will star in and direct the six-episode miniseries written by Luke Davies and David Michôd – who wrote Netflix’s under-rated War Machine (2017). Clooney’s relevant past credits include The Men Who Stare at Goats (2009), O Brother, Where Art Thou? (2000) and Confessions of a Dangerous Mind (2002).
According to The Hollywood Reporter, it’s going to be produced by Paramount Television and Anonymous Content, but does not yet have a network. However, it is expected to land a sizable fee at a deep-pocketed outlet. Clooney is just the latest example of a big Hollywood name to switch to TV, continuing this ever-growing trend.
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