Whit Stillman wanted to helm an adaptation of Anchee Min’s Maoist memoir, Red Azalea, as his next project after his 1998 film, The Last Days of Disco. But, he told us, he was pushed out of the project when Oliver Stone wanted in. Stillman says he was ready to extend an option to the book for $140,000, but the deal mysteriously collapsed when Stone showed interest. Stillman’s option lapsed, and Stone wound up dropping the film when he realized it couldn’t be shot in China.
I don’t think we’d previously heard that Oliver Stone was the reason Stillman dropped Red Azalea.