During our recent webcam chat (watch above) about “The Circus,” their Showtime series on the 2016 election, political journalists Mark Halperin and John Heilemann revealed that there may be a TV movie based on “Double Down,” their book chronicling the 2012 presidential race. Their first political tome, “Game Change,” which detailed the 2008 election, was made into a 2012 telefilm that won four Emmys.
Heilemann says “there’s a lot of really creative and interesting ideas we have about how to do it” while Halperin adds “stay tuned as they say in television.” These political pundits then make merry. Halperin says, “I have one word ‘claymation'” while Heilemann asks, “Can you imagine a claymation Joe Biden?”
As for a book on the 2016 race Halperin teases, “it’s going to be pop-up and scratch-and-sniff. When you open the Trump page, and the hair pops up, and you can scratch it and smell his conditioner. And Heilemann adds, “I’m arguing for holograms.”
With regards to the “The Circus,” which is listed on the Emmy ballot under Best Documentary or Nonfiction Series, Halperin says they “sit down and think about plot, characters, drama and humor — all those things that great stories have.” And Heilemann notes they “are not trying to look like anything that’s on TV in terms of political coverage.” As he explains, “it has a cinema quality but its amazed people that we have things that occurred on Saturday that appear on the show Sunday.”
Heilemann observes, “for many people this is the craziest election they have ever seen. There’s a lot at stake for the country and the drama is very high. We are trying to create something that will stand the test of time.” And Halperin concurs. “We are aspiring to make something that’s not disposable. We are telling stories that happen to be about politics, but they are really more about a big, interesting, high pressured, competition.”
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