The name “McDonald’s” seems to be internationally recognised. Along with its golden arches, resembling the letter “M”, this international company may have established one of the most prolific and recognisable brands in the fast food industry. Although, there was a time when this global chain of fast food restaurants was a single outlet, yet to embrace the ubiquity the company seems to have today. The origin of McDonald’s begins in the year 1940 and was known as “McDonald’s Bar-B-Q”. During this time, the owners were Dick and Mac McDonanld who opened this first restaurant on fourteenth and E streets in San Bernardiono, California. McDonald’s Bar-B-Q was a traditional drive-in, featuring a sizeable menu and a car hop service . It was 8 years later, in 1948, brothers Dick and Mac McDonald closed this restaurant to make changes which reshape their operation.
When the McDonald’s Bar-B-Q re-opened, 3 months later, the menu was significantly reduced in size, to core nine items; the menu consisted of the hamburger, cheeseburger, soft drinks, milk, coffee, potato chips and a slice of pie. Back in 1948, one could purchase a hamburger for 15 cents. With their newly reopened menu, restaurant owners Dick and Mac McDonald continued to make burgers for several years until a visit by a salesman named Ray Kroc. Ray Kroc happened upon the McDonald’s brothers and their fledgling business in 1954; fascinated by the way in which the McDonald’s brothers operated, Ray Kroc offered his services with a goal of taking the company nationwide.
This pivotal meeting in 1954 between the McDonald’s brothers and Ray Kroc seems to have been noted as the moment “McDonald’s Bar-B-Q” set their sights on expansion. This moment seems to be the focus for a new biographical drama, ‘The Founder’. From American director John Lee Hancock (Saving Mr. Banks, The Blind Side) and film writer Robert Siegel (The Wrestler, Turbo), the story of the McDonald brothers and Ray Kroc aims to receive cinematic treatment. Taking centre stage and cast in the role of salesman Ray Kroc is Hollywood veteran Michael Keaton (Birdman, Batman). Starring beside Michael Keaton are the two McDonald brothers, Dick McDonald played by Nick Offerman (Parks and Recreation, Fargo) and Mac McDonald, played by John Carroll Lynch (Shutter Island, Gran Torino).
Through focusing on Ray Kroc’s involvement in the rise of fast food restaurant McDonald’s, The Founder aims to tell a tale of ambition and persistence. The Founder also stars Linda Cardellini (ER, Avengers: Age of Ultron) and B.J. Novak (The Office, The Amazing Spider-Man 2) as key figures in the retelling of this moment in history. Producing this motion picture is FilmNation Entertainment, known for their involvement in the release of Room(2015), The Imitation Game (2014) and several other blockbuster titles. In addition to FilmNation Entertainment’s involvement, The Weinstein Company, who’s previously produced Lion (2016) and Carol (2015), to name a few, have also contributed to the production of The Founder.
Since the restaurant’s origin, McDonald’s have grown into a global brand. Presently, McDonald’s have more than 36000 restaurants worldwide and employ over 1.8 million people. In the UK alone, the McDonald’s chain of fast food restaurants have established over 1,200 branches. From its humble origin as “McDonald’s Bar-B-Q” in the 1940s, the restaurant has grown into a global empire. By creating a dramatised version of McDonald’s inception and its rise to international recognition, The Founder aims to convey the true story of how the fast food company began.
The Founder aims to release 17th February 2017.
How might The Founder aim to tell the origin story of the chain of fast-food restaurants, McDonald’s?