Jack Nicholson Always Had A Third Chinatown Movie In Mind
There isn’t a chance “Chinatown,” written by Robert Towne and directed by Roman Polanski, would get made as a feature film today.
Its detail-dense narrative about water rights in Southern California, intertwined with the vile dealings of incestuous industrialist Noah Cross (John Huston), would likely be expanded into a series or not made at all.
It’s a terrific neo-noir, and it works spectacularly for viewers with attention spans, but Towne’s slow-burn narrative feels like the kind of material that gets meted out over twelve too-long episodes nowadays.Interestingly, Towne and star Jack Nicholson did have a long-term plan for nosy private detective Jake Gittes.
Unfortunately, it blew apart spectacularly when Jack Nicholson muscled through the production of the “Chinatown” sequel, “The Two Jakes.” After numerous delays, Nicholson directed and rewrote portions of Towne’s script, infuriating his former collaborator to the point where they did not speak for many years.
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