Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick, the writing duo behind films like Zombieland and the upcoming X-Men franchise spinoff Deadpool, are developing a feature film based on the advertising debacle that was 1985’s “New Coke.” According to Deadline, the pair have themselves acquired the big screen rights to the 1987 nonfiction account of the pop ordeal, “The Real Coke, The Real Story,” written by Thomas Oliver.
According to the book’s official description, Oliver “[goes] inside the Coca-Cola Company to examine one of the most fascinating episodes in the history of American business in this cautionary tale of corporate decision making.”
On their official site, the Coca Cola Company has published a brief account of their infamous product reboot.
“The Coca-Cola Company took arguably the biggest risk in consumer goods history,” the site explains, “announcing that it was changing the formula for the world’s most popular soft drink, and spawning consumer angst the likes of which no business has ever seen.”
Although Coke’s site doesn’t mention its involvement, the film version is also expected to feature Pepsi’s role in causing the unfortunate brand relaunch that led to surprisingly vocal consumer outcry.
“Protest groups — such as the Society for the Preservation of the Real Thing and Old Cola Drinkers of America (which claimed to have recruited 100,000 in a drive to bring back “old” Coke) — popped up around the country,” the official site continues. “Songs were written to honor the old taste. Protesters at a Coca-Cola event in downtown Atlanta in May carried signs with ‘We want the real thing’ and ‘Our children will never know refreshment.'”
Check back for updates on this new project as they become available and catch Reese and Wernick’s Deadpool, directed by Tim Miller, in theaters February 12, 2016.