fb-pixel

A couple of years from now, news outlets across the country will run briefs about the 75th anniversary of the Cocoanut Grove fire, when 492 people lost their lives in an inferno that consumed the swinging supper club on Piedmont Street. That feels inadequate to Deb Whitaker, who's been trying for more than a decade to get a movie made about the tragic events of Nov. 28, 1942. Envisioning a love story a la "Titanic," Whitaker, owner of New Hampshire-based Emerald Drive Productions, has pitched the idea in Hollywood without success. Now, she and her writing partner, Ken Lawrence, are proceeding on their own, planning a fund-raiser for the project in the spring. "We want to make the movie as historically accurate as possible, with a fictional love story inspired by some of the people who were there that night," Whitaker told us Wednesday. Next month is the 73d anniversary of the Cocoanut Grove fire, which is one of the deadliest in the country's history, and Whitaker said she's eager to get going on the movie so something can be in theaters by 2017. "It's such an unbelievable story," she said.