Fresh from collecting the ‘Best Documentary’ award at the British Independent Film Awards and the ‘Pioneering & Innovation’ Award at the AUTOSPORT Awards, SENNA writer Manish Pandey has confirmed he is already working his next F1 film project.
With the SENNA documentary achieving worldwide acclaim since its release, the film’s writer, Pandey (pictured top, with Murray Walker and Professor Sid Watkins), has high hopes that this success will propel him into future opportunities to make motorsport movies.
With SENNA still attracting interest and praise around the world, Pandey is already hard at work on his next film project, a dramatic adaptation on the lives of Mike Hawthorn and Peter Collins.
“The script will hopefully be finished next week, and that has been two-and-a-half years of quiet research and writing,” he said. “It will be very different as it is a drama.
“At the moment the working title is La Scuderia, and I had a lot of fun at the Abu Dhabi GP as I spent a lot of time with Piero Ferrari [Enzo Ferrari’s son], convincing him of the merits of the story, but we will see.”
Pandey hopes that the story of Hawthorn and Collins will translate onto the cinema screen.
The pair became great friends in 1957 when Collins joined Ferrari as Hawthorn’s team-mate, even going so far as agreeing to split their winnings, as well as engaging in a fierce rivalry with fellow Ferrari driver Luigi Musso.
At the 1958 German Grand Prix, Collins was tragically killed before Hawthorn’s eyes when he carried too much speed into a corner, hit a ditch and was thrown from his car into the trees. Hawthorn was devastated by his friend’s loss and quit the sport after winning the championship at the season-ending Moroccan Grand Prix.
Tragically, Hawthorn would die just months later in a car accident.
“There are only two motor racing stories that have absolutely grabbed me – Senna, because I grew up knowing it, and the other one is Hawthorn/Collins – because I didn’t know it,” Pandey continues. “All the drivers were gone before I was born.
“So I am much more nervous about this – because it is going to be fiction. It is not financed yet but that looks like it is falling into place. So these latest awards will help, and I hope we can do it justice. Mike Hawthorn and Peter Collins – their story is unbelievable.”
Pandey’s announcement makes his the third F1-related film that audiences can expect to see in the coming months. Formula One Management was the first to announce it was supporting a documentary charting the sport’s history, which is set to be released next year.
In the meantime, acclaimed director Ron Howard is also making an adapted account of the championship rivalry between James Hunt and Niki Lauda.
This is certainly a burgeoning period for motorsport and cinema!
[Images via ESPN, The Cahier Archive]