In November 2013, the Make-A-Wish Foundation gave leukemia-stricken tyke Miles Scott a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Asked what dreams the organization could bring to life, Scott had a single, simple request: To be Batkid, a child’s equivalent of nocturnal crimefighting vigilante Batman. Make-A-Wish got to work on making that happen, but what happened to Scott was beyond imagining for even the most idealistic among us. Between 10 and 12 thousand volunteers came out to be part of Scott’s Batkid adventure, helping him defeat the Riddler and Penguin before receiving the key to Gotham City from the Mayor. The story is a little mushy, but it’s hard to be cynical in the face of such an adorable story of conquered adversity. (Miles has been out of chemo since 2013.)
A documentary capturing Scott’s amazing story, the appropriately-titled Batkid, debuts at Slamdance Film Festival on Saturday. But a new development will bring even more Batkid-centric inspira-tainment to theaters in the near future. Toothy Mystic Pizza actress Julia Roberts will produce and star in a fictionalized account of the Batkid origin story. Roberts has demonstrated a chameleonic range in the past, but she would still be a stretch to play Scott himself, so as our friends at /Film note, she’ll most likely play San Francisco’s Make-A-Wish chapter director Patricia Wilson.
Depending on viewers’ individual feelings about naked appeals to pathos, this one could go either way. Whether the film feels like a three-hankie tearjerker or an Upworthy post expanded to feature length will most likely vary between audiences.