Dear Mr. McKay,
First off, huge fan of Don’t Look Up. I mean, a parable about climate change and political division starring Leonardo DiCaprio and a big rock? Yes, please! But there’s something else rapidly becoming the defining issue of our time: the 1985 Iran-Contra affair. And goddamn, I’ve written a movie about it.
You probably know plenty about the Iran-Contra affair given that it’s been dominating the mainstream news cycle, but Just Look at Iran (that’s the working title) is about more than just this devastating political scandal. It’s also about love. And climate change. But mainly, it’s about Iran.
Now, I know what you’re thinking: “Not another heart-wrenching yet comedic take on this classic tale!” Fear not. My version isn’t like any hack-job, half-assed retelling of a global American embarrassment. It’s adaptable to an “On Ice” spectacular!
Just as the central conflict of Don’t Look Up follows scientists who have discovered a comet hurtling through the astros at breakneck speed on a collision course with Earth, my film is—yet again—pretty much just about the Iran-Contra affair. It features all your favorite characters: Ayatollah Khomeini, the Contras in Nicaragua, a fun-loving yet concerned hot scientist, and of course seven American hostages held in Lebanon by Hezbollah.
Everyone Quick, Look at Iran (other working title) also features a ditsy yet lovable president character, but instead of Meryl Streep, ours is just Reagan. He’s so personable! The tech billionaire character is also Reagan. The head of NASA is Attorney General Ed Meese.
The addition of Timothée Chalamet’s character “Yule” was a genius way of grounding the narrative in Don’t Look Up, so I created my own: his name is “Beef,” and he is one of the Senior Administrators of the Khomeini regime to whom the Reagan administration sells arms, a flagrant violation of the widely publicized arms embargo. Classic Beef! Also, instead of skateboarding, he rides around on one of those single-wheel electronic scooters. We’re blending the boundaries of time here, baby!
You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll be surprised someone could flout the Boland Amendment—which prohibited US aid to the Contras while they rebelled against the established socialist government of Nicaragua—this badly. But most importantly, you’ll come away asking yourself, “Wait, Jennifer Lawrence was in this one, too?” And she was!
I’ve done my best to remain true to the source material. For example, much like the Iran-Contra affair itself, the film’s run-time is nearly two years. And immediately following the credits, all audience members will be indicted (but later pardoned.)
From Vice to The Other Guys, you’ve made it clear you’re equally adept at writing dramas and comedies. In an ode to that balance, at 15-minute intervals in IRAN IRAN IRAN (less popular working title), someone on-screen will slip.
So what do you say, Mr. McKay? Wanna make a movie? No, want to change the world? They say if we don’t learn from history, we are doomed to repeat it. That doesn’t feel super applicable in this situation, but it’s kind of a fun idea, right? I feel like we’re going to be great friends.