OK, so that title may have been a little out of line considering the immense popularity that Napoleon Dynamite found in its theatrical run. However, new information has come around from writer/director Jared Hess and his wife, writer Jerusha Hess after a screening for their newest movie, Gentleman Broncos, that states that they initially had other plans for Napoleon when they were making it.
The initial plan for the movie was apparently to have Dynamite as some kind of small town wannabe paranormal investigator who studies crop circles, has alien conspiracies, and even gets chased by government agents. I think it’s safe to assume that it wouldn’t be a serious hobby, either, but much more Napoleon accidentally stumbling on to something big and just sort of being a goof. These plans were Jared’s and his wife was the one to tell him he’s crazy and to kill the entire idea off, but it has to be assumed that many would have preferred this, no?
Click over to read what the husband and wife duo had to say in an interview with io9.
Jared: I don’t know, it just involved Napoleon researching crop circle crap and weird extraterrestrial —
Jerusha: Paranormal —
Jared: — stuff going down in the farming community. I don’t know. It didn’t get much further than that. She [Jerusha] stopped it right away.
Jerusha: There are a couple of white Bronco scenes, where he [Napoleon] was being chased by some government officials.
Jared: Yeah, it was bad. It was bad. But we didn’t pursue it. We kept it —
Jerusha: Jared was so focused on the story for Napoleon, when really it was just the character that was so entertaining. And I kept saying “Jared, we don’t need the story. Let’s show a little glimpse of his life.”
As Miss Hess stated, they didn’t have a story, which is why I personally thought Napoleon Dynamite was one of the most over-rated movies I have ever seen. I even waited over a year to watch it to try and avoid the taint often brought on by the sickly amount of praise it and other movies sometimes receive, and still, there were a mere two or three laughable bits, mostly caused by reactionary situations. If they would have had the Napoleon Dynamite character involved in an actual story, and had his character involved in the wacky world of the paranormal and unexplained, I believe it would have been hundreds of times more entertaining…but this is just I.
So where’s the line in the sand: is it as easy as Dynamite fans hate the idea and people like myself think it would have helped, or would some of you fans been interested in this if the fates had moved in a different direction?