A movie on Jonestown cult leader James Warren Jones starring Leonardo DiCaprio is in final negotiations with MGM.
DiCaprio and Jennifer Davisson will produce the biopic titled Jim Jones, written by Scott Rosenberg and produced by their Appian Way production company. Previous credits for Scott Rosenberg include Venom (2018) as well as Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle and Jumanji: The Next Level.
A founder of the People’s Temple, Jones was influential in the development of the organization. It began as a Christian and socialist congregation in 1955, but eventually evolved into a cult of fanatics.
Jones, disillusioned with the US government and Christianity, migrated his group to Guyana in 1974, where they constructed a jungle commune known as Jonestown. Having publicly declared himself to be God by then, Jones promoted the commune as a socialist paradise that was free of government oppression. In 1978, he and several close associates performed a mass murder-suicide in which over 900 members consumed cyanide-laced beverages. During the same year, Jones’ dead body was discovered, he had been shot in the head. An autopsy later determined that he committed suicide.
The name Jones still bears notoriety today, along with the place of where the massacre occurred: Jonestown.