After years spent behind the camera filming action-packed blockbusters such as The Day After Tomorrow and Independence Day which depicted the possible end of civilization, director Roland Emmerich now plans to make a smaller movie about the dawn of the modern LGBT equal rights movement — the Stonewall riots of 1969.
“I may want to do a little movie about the Stonewall riots in New York,” Emmerich said to Empire magazine. “It’s about these crazy kids in New York, and a country bumpkin who gets into their gang, and at the end they start this riot and change the world.”
Emmerich has enlisted John Robin Bates, whose queer-themed work includes Broadway’s The Paris Letter and TV’s Brothers and Sisters, to write the screenplay. The director reveals that Bates’ take on the subject will follow a homeless gay teen who gravitates towards the Stonewall Inn and eventually gets caught up in the riots.
Emmerich, who is gay and whose new film White House Down will be released in June, explains why telling the story is important to him.
“It’s one of these civil rights moments, like Rosa Parks,” he said. “And very little is known about it. Even gay people don’t know much about it. There are only two books written about it.”