From Fact to Fictional Reality
Adapting real-life stories to film and television has become a firm favourite with audiences and viewers worldwide, drawing us into a spectacular fictional reality where we transcend reality and explore alternate.
7 DAYS IN ENTEBBE Acclaimed producers Tim Bevan and Kate Solomon didn’t set out to become experts in cinematic depictions of real-life terrorism; it just turned out that way. Ten years after shepherding the Oscar-nominated 9/11 drama United 93 to the screen, the pair was approached about overseeing another fact-based film centered on a passenger jet hijacking. This time the focus was on the remarkable true story of Air France Flight 139, which was hijacked by terrorists in 1976 and held for ransom at Uganda’s Entebbe Airport.
12 STRONG Every American adult knows exactly where they were and what they were doing on the terrible morning of September 11, 2001.But until recently, only a small handful knew about the extraordinary events that unfolded in the immediate aftermath.With the country still reeling, 12 brave members of the U.S. Army’s elite Special Forces—known as the Green Berets—left their homes and loved ones to take on a perilous classified mission in the war-torn country of Afghanistan.These “12 Strong” were chosen to strike the first blow in America’s response to the terrorist attacks. They were not ordered to go. They volunteered to go.Now the true story of these dozen warriors is being brought to the big screen in the new action drama. Oscar winner Ted Tally (The Silence of the Lambs) and Peter Craig (The Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Parts 1 & 2) wrote the screenplay, based on the acclaimed book Horse Soldiers by author Doug Stanton.
THE 15:17 TO PARIS From Clint Eastwood comes the real-life story of three men whose brave act turned them into heroes during a highspeed railway ride, which he directed from a screenplay by Dorothy Blyskal, based on the book by Anthony Sadler, Alek Skarlatos, Spencer Stone and Jeffrey E. Stern. “It hasn’t been a conscious choice to tell heroic stories or make movies about everyday heroes,” says veteran director and producer Clint Eastwood, whose previous two films, “Sully” and “American Sniper,” highlighted the efforts of rather singular men. “I just do the stories that come along and interest me. Some feats are exceptional, and beneficial to society, and it’s nice when you can tell a story like that.”
A UNITED KINGDOM The idea first came into being in 2010, when actor David Oyelowo was working on the film 96 Minutes. Its producers, Justin Moore-Lewy and Charlie Mason, had bought the rights to Susan Williams’ s book Colour Bar, which detailed the remarkable story of Seretse Khama and Ruth Williams.Oyelowo continued to bring former collaborators on board including producer Brunson Green, with whom he had done The Help, and screenwriter Guy Hibbert with whom he had collaborated on two films: Blood and Oil, and Complicit.
ADRIFT Based on the inspiring true story of two sailors who set out to journey across the ocean from Tahiti to San Diego and sailed directly into one of the most catastrophic hurricanes in recorded history. In the aftermath of the storm, with no hope for rescue, Adrift is the unforgettable story about the resilience of the human spirit and the transcendent power of love. Produced and directed by Baltasar Kormákur, and written by David Branson Smith, Aaron Kandell and Jordan Kandell.
ALLIED The true story of two undercover WWII spies who fell madly in love only to be set mortally against each other when their true identities were exposed. Screenplay by Steven Knight – an Oscar® nominee for Stephen Frears’ London thriller Dirty Pretty Things and honored for the screenplays for David Cronenberg’s Russian Mafia tale Eastern Promises as well as writing and directing the daring one-man drama Locke
ALL THE MONEY IN THE WORLD The journey from page to screen began when producer Quentin Curtis optioned John Pearson’s book on Getty, called Painfully Rich: The Outrageous Fortune and Misfortunes of the Heirs of J.Paul Getty that focused specifically on the infamous kidnapping. He brought the project to screenwriter David Scarpa. Scarpa, whose screenwriting career began with an original screenplay for DreamWorks that became The Last Castle, and Scott Derrickson’s The Day The Earth Stood Still, was intrigued by Getty’s notorious miserliness and what that represented emotionally. “I of course knew about that kidnapping but really I had always wanted to do something about money and how it controls and shapes people’s lives,” says Scarpa.
ALONE IN BERLIN , a powerfully moving, true-life drama-thriller set in Second World War Berlin, is directed by acclaimed actor turned filmmaker Vincent Perez (La Reine Margot), who adapted revered German novelist Hans Fallada’s international bestseller Every Man Dies Alone / Alone In Berlin for the big screen with Achim von Borries (Good Bye Lenin!).
AMERICAN ANIMALS is the true story of four young men who get lost in a fantasy of their own creation, only to discover that by the time they are thrust into reality, it’s too late — they have crossed a line into violence and criminality from which they can never return.The extraordinary and thrilling true story of four friends living an ordinary existence who brazenly attempt to execute one of the most audacious art heists in US history. But not everything is as it seems, and as the daring theft unfolds through each of their perspectives, each of them start to question whether their attempts to inject excitement and purpose into their lives is simply a misguided attempt at achieving the American Dream. Marking the narrative feature debut of British-born filmmaker Bart Layton, it’s the second feature for the multi-faceted auteur, whose breakout debut The Imposter, won the BAFTA Award for Outstanding Debut in 2013.
AMERICAN CRIME STORY is an American true crime anthology television series developed by Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski, who are executive producers with Brad Falchuk, Nina Jacobson, Ryan Murphy, and Brad Simpson. Similar to American Horror Story, also from Murphy and Falchuk, each season is presented as a self-contained miniseries, following separate unrelated true events. The first season, subtitled The People v. O. J. Simpson, presents the murder trial of O. J. Simpson, based on Jeffrey Toobin‘s book The Run of His Life: The People v. O. J. Simpson. The second season, subtitled The Assassination of Gianni Versace, explores the murder of designer Gianni Versace by serial killer Andrew Cunanan, based on Maureen Orth‘s book Vulgar Favors: Andrew Cunanan, Gianni Versace, and the Largest Failed Manhunt in U. S. History. A third season, based on the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, and a fourth season, based on the Clinton–Lewinsky scandal, are in development.
AMERICAN MADE Gary Spinelli (Stash House) wrote a screenplay about the international escapade based on the outrageous (and real) exploits of a hustler and pilot unexpectedly recruited by the CIA to run one of the biggest covert operations in U.S. history.
ASINAMALI Written and directed by Mbongeni Ngema, the film version of the seminal musical. The narrative follows a group of prisoners in the 80s as they think back on their pasts and the events leading to their arrest.
BATTLE OF THE SEXES Husband-and-wife directorial team Valerie Faris and Jonathan Dayton, who gave us Little Miss Sunshine, explore a moment when social change was embodied by two complex people in Battle Of The Sexes, the spectacular single tennis match between rising 29 year-old women’s star Billie Jean King and former men’s champ Bobby Riggs.
THE BIG SHORT When four outsiders see what the big banks, media and government regulators refuse to — the impending collapse of the global economy — they have an idea: The Big Short. Their bold investment leads them into the dark underbelly of the modern banking industry where they must question everyone and everything.Based on the book The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine by Michael Lewis (Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game, The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game), the screenplay was written by Charles Randolph (Love & Other Drugs, The Interpreter) and director Adam McKay .
BILLIONAIRE BOYS CLUB Based on the unbelievable, but true story, it’s a crime story of ambitious outsiders who became the rock stars of the L.A. social scene – a world dripping with money, sex and celebrity – and whose lavish lifestyle and impressive returns obscure a snowballing fraud and grew into a Ponzi Scheme that turned homicidal in the Summer of 1984. The film was directed by James Cox (The Rock Star, Highway, Wonderland) and co-written by Cox and Captain Mauzner (a writer and producer, known for Wonderland (2003), Factory Girl (2006)).Cox wrote the script in four months after an exclusive research of the events with his brother Stephen, who spent another four months on it. Cox gathered the material for the screenplay from court documents, oral transcripts, and published articles. He said, “as we were writing this, I thought, ‘What if ‘Wall Street’ became ‘Alpha Dog’ halfway through?”
THE BIRTH OF A NATION Writer, director and actor Nate Parker takes on a distinctly vast ambition for a first-time filmmaker, presenting a more take-charge slave narrative than we are used to seeing with The Birth Of A Nation, boldly reclaiming the title of D.W. Griffith’s 1915 film.
BLACKKKLANSMAN Nearly three decades after releasing that masterpiece Do the Right Thing, visionary filmmaker Spike Lee’s latest expression of the facts of American life – BlacKkKlansman, which was awarded the Grand Prix at the Cannes film festival – is the true story of Ron Stallworth, the first black detective in the Colorado Springs police force who, in 1978, went undercover with the Ku Klux Klan. Spike Lee directs from a screenplay crafted by Charlie Wachtel & David Rabinowitz and Kevin Willmott & Spike Lee, based on the book Black Klansman by Ron Stallworth
BREATHE Producer Jonathan Cavendish had always believed that his father’s life story would be powerful material for a compelling film. Robin Cavendish had been a trailblazer, a remarkable, larger- than-life figure. He was diagnosed with polio in his late 20s and remained paralysed from the neck down. Totally reliant on a respirator that ‘breathed’ for him, he faced a life confined to a hospital bed. Yet he refused to accept that fate: with the help of his wife Diana, and their inventive and supportive friends, he found a way to
BRIDGE OF SPIES Producer Marc Platt, whose credits include “Into the Woods,” “Drive” and the upcoming “The Girl on the Train,” was familiar with Donovan’s story and was also aware of director Steven Spielberg’s interest in the Cold War—and history in general—and felt it was ideally suited for the director’s sensibilities. “As a filmmaker, Steven has studied some great iconic characters and can re-create history in an extraordinarily cinematic way. He’s the perfect filmmaker to tell a story like this.”
CHAPPAQUIDDICK Screenwriters Taylor Allen and Andrew Logan, who both grew up in Dallas where John F. Kennedy was assassinated in 1963, had a strong emotional connection to the Kennedy family, long before their 2015 screenplay landed on the Blacklist. Living there, the tragedy in Dealey Plaza was impossible to ignore and it sowed a lifelong curiosity about the Kennedys’ Camelot.Allen says the murders of JFK and Bobby, as well as the other misfortunes surrounding the family, led them to wonder about where Sen. Ted Kennedy fit in. “As a human being, he’s so underexplored in cinematic terms,” Allen says, pointing to films like 1991’s JFK and 2006’s BOBBY that have explored the older Kennedys’ lives. “Once you start looking into who Ted was, all roads lead to Chappaquiddick. There’s a younger audience that will really have their eyes opened. For me, Ted is definitely the most relatable of the Kennedy family, and in his youth he was the black sheep of the sons. The press covering him in the 1940s and ’50s referred to him he as the ‘overweight’ Kennedy. He was expelled from Harvard for cheating on a Spanish exam, which created a rift with his father. Moments like these humanize him. That’s why he struggled so much to do the right thing in this situation.”
CHRISTOPHER ROBIN Winnie-the-Pooh and friends reunite with old pal Christopher Robin — now an adult. Directed by Marc Forster, with a screenplay written by Tom McCarthy, Alex Ross Perry, and Allison Schroeder and from a story by Perry. The film is inspired by A. A. Milne’s book Winnie-the-Pooh and is a live-action/CGI continuation of the Disney franchise of the same name.
CHURCHILL Book and historical adaptations are hugely popular on the Big and Small screens and when the producers looked for a screenwriter for Churchill, London‐based screenwriter and historian Alex von Tunzelmann was the ideal candidate to tackle the subject matter.
CONCUSSION A dramatic thriller based on the incredible true David vs. Goliath story of American immigrant Dr. Bennet Omalu, the brilliant forensic neuropathologist who made an important medical discovery. Dr. Omalu’s emotional quest puts him at dangerous odds with one of the most powerful institutions in the world.Written and directed by Peter Landesman, Cocussion is based on the GQ article “Game Brain” by Jeanne Marie Laskas.
THE DANISH GIRL is the remarkable love story inspired by the lives of Lili Elbe and Gerda Wegener, based on the book by David Ebershoff with a screenplay by Lucinda Coxon and directed by Tom Hooper (The King’s Speech, Les Misérables).
DARKEST HOUR “Words can, and do, change the world. This is precisely what happened through Winston Churchill in 1940,” marvels BAFTA Award-winning screenwriter and producer Anthony McCarten. The linchpins of his original screenplay for Darkest Hour became three speeches that Churchill wrote and delivered between May and June 1940. “He was under intense political and personal pressure, yet he was spurred to such heights in so few days – over and over again.”
DEEPWATER HORIZON On April 20th, 2010, one of the world’s largest man-made disasters occurred on the Deepwater Horizon in the Gulf of Mexico. Now filmmaker Peter Berg brings that story to the big screen with Deepwater Horizon, a gripping glimpse into the unseen world behind the global disaster that took the lives of 11 workers, sharing an untold story of men & women, real life heroes, who faced extraordinary consequences with extreme bravery. The screenplay was written by Matthew Michael Carnahan and Matthew Sand, based upon an article by David Barstow, David Rohde, and Stephanie Saul published in The New York Times.
DENIAL A powerful story about one woman’s relentless efforts to establish justice and remind the world about the tragedies of the Holocaust, Denial is a gripping, inspirational real-life account based on Deborah E. Lipstadt’s book Denial: Holocaust History on Trial, and adapted for the big screen by esteemed playwright David Hare.
DETROIT Controversial subject matter fuels great stories, and with Detroit, director Kathryn Bigelow adeptly balances an expertly crafted cinema verité filmic and up-close-and-personal approach with screenwriter/producer Mark Boal’s tension-packed “you are there” narrative.
THE DISASTER ARTIST Director James Franco (As I Lay Dying, Child of God) transforms the tragicomic true-story of aspiring filmmaker and infamous Hollywood outsider Tommy Wiseau—an artist whose passion was as sincere as his methods were questionable—into a celebration of friendship, artistic expression, and dreams pursued against insurmountable odds. Based on Greg Sestero’s best-selling tell-all about the making of Tommy’s cult-classic “disasterpiece” The Room (The Greatest Bad Movie Ever Made), The Disaster Artist is a hilarious and welcome reminder that there is more than one way to become a legend—and no limit to what you can achieve when you have absolutely no idea what you’re doing. The screenplay was written by Scott Neustadter & Michael H. Weber ((500) Days of Summer, The Fault in Our Stars) based on the book The Disaster Artist: My Life Inside the Room, The Greatest Bad Movie Ever Made by Greg Sestero and Tom Bissell.
DUNKIRK Visionary storyteller and storymaker Christopher Nolan has taken audiences from the streets of Gotham City, to the infinite world of dreams, to the farthest reaches of space. Now, for the first time, the innovative director/writer/producer has turned his camera to a real-life event, one that has resonated with him throughout his life: the miracle of Dunkirk.
EDDIE THE EAGLE The feel-good Eddie The Eagle takes us into the life of Michael “Eddie” Edwards (Taron Egerton), an unlikely but courageous British ski-jumper who never stopped believing in himself, and with the help of a rebellious and charismatic coach Hugh Jackman), took on the establishment and won the hearts of sports fans around the world by making an improbable and historic showing at the 1988 Calgary Winter Olympics. It was directed by Dexter Fletcher (Wild Bill), from a screenplay by Sean Macaulay and Simon Kelton.
ELVIS & NIXON Based on an actual encounter that took place on December 21, 1970, Elvis & Nixon hilariously re-imagines the unlikely meeting between rocker and politician as dramatized by two of America’s finest actors, starring Academy Award-nominee Michael Shannon as Presley and two-time Academy Award-winner Kevin Spacey as Nixon. The film is directed by Liza Johnson (Return, Hateship Loveship) and written by Joey Sagal & Hanala Sagal (Traumedy Central) and Cary Elwes (“Family Guy,” The Princess Bride).
THE EXCEPTION A spy thriller and love story that mines a forgotten pocket of 20th century history. Based on the compelling novel “The Kaiser’s Last Kiss” by Alan Judd. Screenplay adaptation by Simon Burke (Persuasion)
FILM STARS DON’T DIE IN LIVERPOOL 30 years after Peter Turner published his memoir, entitled Film Stars Don’t Die in Liverpool, which recounted his tale of love and loss with former Hollywood star Gloria Grahame, the affectionate, moving and wry recollection of his unlikely story comes to the big screen with Annette Bening starring as Grahame, Jamie Bell as Turner. “I have wanted to make this film for over 20 years,” says producer Barbara Broccoli. “It is very meaningful to me. I knew Gloria and Peter when they were together.”
FINAL PORTRAIT Producer Gail Egan came to Final Portrait when Stanley Tucci showed her the screenplay that he had written, adapted from a memoir written by James Lord, ‘A Giacometti Portrait’.Tuccihas appeared in over 90 films and countless television shows. He has appeared in more than a dozen plays, on and off Broadway, and has been behind the camera working as a writer, director, and producer. The memoir features the last meeting between Alberto Giacometti and James Lord, a younger, wealthy American who had befriended the artist on one of his regular trips to Paris
THE FINEST HOURS is an exquisitely well-crafted film about love and heroism, based on the remarkable true story of the most daring rescue mission in the history of the U.S. Coast Guard, filled with nostalgia and adventure that immerses you emotionally and physically. Transporting you to the heart of the action and creating a fully immersive cinematic experience on an epic scale, the film is directed by Australian filmmaker Craig Gillespie (Lars and the Real Girl and the highly acclaimed Showtime series The United States of Tara), and written by Scott Silver and Paul Tamasy & Eric Johnson, based on the acclaimed non-fiction book of the same name by Casey Sherman and Michael J. Tougias.
FLORENCE FOSTER JENKINS is a charming portrait of a woman ensnared by the shattering reality of her all-consuming fantasy of being the greatest singer in the world. It was the glorious chasm between Florence Foster Jenkins’ self-belief and her startling failings as a singer that immediately hooked writer Nicholas Martin.
THE FOUNDER An origin story of how the billion-dollar empire McDonald’s was born. Original screenplay by Robert Siegel (The Wrestler).
FREE STATE OF JONES Based on Oscar-nominated writer/director Gary Ross’ original screenplay, the epic action-drama Free State of Jones tells the extraordinary story of a little known episode in American history during which Newt Knight, a fearless Mississippi farmer, led an unlikely band of poor white farmers and runaway slaves in an historic armed rebellion against the Confederacy during the height of the Civil War.
GENIUS is a stirring drama about the complex friendship and transformative professional relationship between the world-renowned book editor Maxwell Perkins (who discovered F. Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway) and the larger-than-life literary giant Thomas Wolfe.John Logan, who wrote the screenplay for Genius, notes that the intensity of Perkins’ relationship with Wolfe was based on how different they were as people. “You couldn’t imagine two more polar opposites than Max Perkins and Thomas Wolfe. Max was a buttoned-up, conservative Yankie book editor who literally and figuratively wore a tie. Thomas Wolfe was a mad, North Carolinian animal. You only need to read five pages of ‘Look Homeward, Angel’ or ‘Of Time and the River’ to see the passion in the words he chose and the way he told his stories. The novels reach out and slap you with so much emotion and passion.”
THE GLASS CASTLE Celebrity gossip columnist Jeannette Walls unveiled deeply guarded secrets she’d long kept of her childhood in her wildly Gothic coming-of-age bestseller. It was adapted into a film by Hawaiin-born writer-director Destin Daniel Cretton and screenwriter Andrew Lanham.
GOLD Inspired by actual events, it tells the epic tale of one man’s American dream and everything he’ll do to keep it from falling apart.The screenplay for Gold was written by Patrick Massett and John Zinman (Friday Night Lights), who also serve as producers, and directed by Academy Award winner Stephen Gaghan (Syriana, Traffic)
GOODBYE CHRISTOPHER ROBIN The inspirational story of how a father bonded with his young son and created the much-adored Winnie-the-Pooh books.The film is based on Ann Thwaite’s 1990 biography A. A. Milne: The Man Behind Winnie-the-Pooh, which was re-released in 2017 as Goodbye Christopher Robin: A. A. Milne and the Making of Winnie-the-Pooh. The newer version contains a preface by the movie’s screenwriter, Frank Cottrell-Boyce (The Railway Man), who also wrote the screenplay for the film directed by Simon Curtis.
GOTTI follows infamous crime boss John Gotti’s rise to become the “Teflon Don” of the Gambino Crime Family in New York City. Multi talented artist, Leo Rossi, who wrote the screenplay for Gotti and also plays Bartholomew “Bobby” Boriello, Gotti’s enforcer, brought a unique angle to the narrative.His text was directly influenced by his conversations with John Gotti himself.By getting to know the men, Rossi knew that the movie needed to show both sides of Gotti’s life.“The screenplay that I envisioned after talking to Gotti had the Mafia element, of course, that’s a certain element to it, but, also the situation of the family. To me, to see how a life of crime in the Mafia affects the family was just as compelling as the Mafia life itself. I tried to interweave them,” he explains.
GRANDMA The new independent film Grandma tells a rare story: a lesbian of advanced years (Lily Tomlin), in mourning for her soul mate and on skittish footing with the much younger woman she’s been seeing (Judy Greer), is suddenly thrust into an adventure involving her teenage granddaughter (Julia Garner) and an unwanted pregnancy. The female-centric subject and cast are courtesy of writer-director Paul Weitz, the man who got his big break writing the film Antz, and gave us About a Boy, In Good Company, American Dreamz, and Admission.
THE GREATEST SHOWMAN Inspired by the legend and ambitions of America’s original pop-culture impresario, P.T. Barnum, comes The Greatest Showman, an inspirational rags-to-riches tale of a brash dreamer who rose from nothing to prove that anything you can envision is possible and that everyone, no matter how invisible, has a stupendous story worthy of a world-class spectacle.Australian filmmaker Michael Gracey makes his feature film directorial debut with The Greatest Showman, a story that, in the larger-than-life spirit of Barnum, bursts into a boldly imagined fictional realm, one full of infectious pop tunes, glam dances and a celebration of the transformative power of showmanship, love and self-belief. Michael Gracey directs from a screenplay by Jenny Bicks and Bill Condon and a story by Jenny Bicks, and braids together original songs by Academy Award winners Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (La La Land) with a multi-talented cast headed by Hugh Jackman to immerse audiences in the very origins of mass entertainment and mega-celebrities in the 70s … the 1870s that is.
HACKSAW RIDGE Desmond Doss was the only American soldier in WWII to fight on the front lines without a weapon in Okinawa during the bloodiest battle of WWII, where he saved 75 men without firing or carrying a gun as he believed that while the war was justified, killing was nevertheless wrong. The screenplay was crafted by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Robert Schenkkan (Kentucky Cycle, All the Way) and Australian writer Andrew Knight (The Water Diviner)
HANDS OF STONE Robert de Niro steps back into the boxing ring again, this time as celebrated trainer Ray Arcel in Hands of Stone, the true story of how the legendary Roberto Duran, who is considered a national treasure in Panama, and Arcel, his celebrated trainer, changed each other’s lives.De Niro came on board early in the process and worked closely with writer-director Jonathan Jakubowicz on the screenplay. They first met because De Niro liked Secuestro Express, Jakubowicz’s first film. He also liked the screenplay for Hands of Stone but he wasn’t sure he wanted to do it because “he couldn’t hear Ray Arcel’s voice.
HE NAMED ME MALALA Acclaimed, Oscar winning documentary filmmaker Davis Guggenheim brings us a profoundly moving and intimate portrait of Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Malala Yousafzai, who was targeted by the Taliban and severely wounded by a gunshot when returning home on her school bus in Pakistan’s Swat Valley. The then 15-year-old (she turned 18 this past July) was singled out, along with her father, for advocating for girls’ education, and the attack on her sparked an outcry from supporters around the world. She miraculously survived and is now a leading campaigner for girls’ education globally as co-founder of the Malala Fund.
HIDDEN FIGURES The film uncovers the incredible, untold yet true story of a brilliant group of Wonder Women who changed the foundations of the country for the better — by aiming for the stars.Screenwriter Allison Schroeder, who not only studied high-level math but interned at NASA, following in the wake of her grandmother, a programmer at NASA from the early days through the shuttle program, and grandfather, who took part in the Mercury project.
I CAN ONLY IMAGINE The inspiring, incredible, and unknown true story behind MercyMe’s beloved song I Can Only Imagine, the most popular contemporary Christian song in history, is brought to life on the Big Screen by the Erwin Brothers, a directing team that focuses on creating faith-based and inspirational feature films.Director/co-writer Jon Erwin has never had a film easier to pitch.“It’s the song you know,” says Jon, “but the story you don’t.”
THE IDOL The incredible true story of Mohammed Assaf defies belief. The 22-year-old Palestinian refugee from Gaza won the hearts of an entire region when he won Arab Idol (the Arab world’s own version of American Idol) in 2013 is now an inspiring film The Idol, directed by Hany Abu-Assad
THE INFILTRATOR is the thrilling true-life story of Special Agent Robert ‘Bob’ Mazur, responsible for bringing down the drug cartels and their bankers alike, in one of history’s most audacious stings.This incredible story is now explored on the big screen in The Infiltrator by acclaimed American filmmaker Brad Furman (The Lincoln Lawyer), who directs from a screenplay written by his mother Ellen Brown Furman, based on Bob Mazur’s autobiography of the same name.
IN THE HEART OF THE SEA It is one of the greatest seafaring tales of all time: the Nantucket whaling ship Essex was attacked by a leviathan—a white whale of singular size and intent—leaving only a few of its crew to overcome near-impossible odds and live to recount their experience. But in the almost 200 years since that harrowing voyage, the truth faded into history, eclipsed by the celebrated novel it inspired, Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick. The extraordinary journey of the Essex and her crew was chronicled by Nathaniel Philbrick in his book In the Heart of the Sea: The Tragedy of the Whaleship Essex. Screenplay by Charles Leavitt, who also shares story credit with Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver
I, TONYA Based on the unbelievable but true events, this darkly comedic tale of American figure skater, Tonya Harding, and one of the most sensational scandals in sports history. Though Harding was the first American woman to complete a triple axel in competition, her legacy was forever defined by her association with an infamous, illconceived, and even more poorly executed attack on fellow Olympic competitor Nancy Kerrigan. Steven Rogers wrote the script for ‘I, Tonya’ which made the 2016 Blacklist and won the 2016 Hit List. He is also a producer on the film. Previous credits include ‘Hope Floats’, ‘Stepmom’, ‘Kate and Leopold’, ‘P. S. I Love You’ and ‘Love the Coopers’ which he also executive produced.
JACKIE Jackie Kennedy led a multi-faceted life of power and influence, but when it came to writing about her, screenwriter and journalist Noah Oppenheim came to feel there was one story that spoke to her psyche in the most compelling way – the very brief but remarkably consequential days that the First Lady spent nearly alone in the White House following her husband’s death.
JOY David O. Russell’s 8th feature film, JOY, probes four decades in the upward-moving life of a single-mom-turned-business-magnate to explore how daring, resilience and the persistence of vision carry people from the ordinary into extraordinary moments of creation, striving and love.
KING ARTHUR: LEGEND OF THE SWORD Acclaimed filmmaker Guy Ritchie brings his dynamic style to the epic fantasy action adventure King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, an iconoclastic take on the classic Excalibur myth, tracing Arthur’s journey from the streets to the throne. Ritchie is an accomplished storyteller who has been entertaining audiences with his dynamic cinematic style for nearly two decades.He directed King Arthur: Legend of the Sword from a screenplay by Joby Harold and Ritchie & Lionel Wigram, story by David Dobkin and Joby Harold.
THE LADY IN THE VAN It has taken another 15 years for Bennett to feel ready to revisit the material as a feature film. In 2006, he and Hytner had transformed their hit play The History Boys into a two-time BAFTA nominated feature, as they had with The Madness Of King George, which garnered 14 BAFTA nominations, including a win for the Alexander Korda Award for Best British Film, and four Academy Award nominations and one win. So happy had been the collaboration on The History Boys that Bennett and Hytner were keen to work again with the film’s established British producers, Kevin Loader of Free Range Films and Damian Jones of DJ Films.
LEGEND Writer-director Brian Helgeland’s Legend, tells the story of Britain’s most notorious gangsters, Reggie and Ronnie Kray, as they have the time of their lives, ruling over London in the middle of the Swinging Sixties.
LION The incredible true story of Indian-born Australian Saroo Brierley and his unwavering determination to find his lost family and finally return to his first home is now realised in all its splendour on the big screen in Lion, from a screenplay by Luke Davies
LOVING VINCENT If there’s one film that transcends its uniqueness, it’s Dorota Kobiela & Hugh Welchman’s Loving Vincent, the world’s first fully oil painted feature film that brings the paintings of Vincent van Gogh to life to tell his remarkable story.Every one of the 65,000 frames of the film is an oil-painting hand-painted by 125 professional oil-painters who travelled from all across the world to the Loving Vincent studios in Poland and Greece to be a part of the production. As remarkable as Vincent’s brilliant paintings, is his passionate and ill-fated life, and mysterious death.Loving Vincent had a 7 year production journey – director Dorota Kobiela had originally planned it as a short film. Before they began writing the script, Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman read 40 different publications about Vincent and visited 19 museums in 6 countries to view around 400 Van Gogh paintings.
THE MAN WITH THE IRON HEART, based on the novel HHhH, written by Laurent Binet, which won the Goncourt prize for a first novel in 2012 and was met with unanimous enthusiasm in the 25 countries in which it was translated, was directed by French director, writer and producer Cédric Jimenez (The Connection) and adapted by Jimenez’ partner Audrey Diwan and playwright/ screenwriter David Farr.
THE MAN WHO INVENTED CHRISTMAS The magical journey that led to the creation of Ebenezer Scrooge, Tiny Tim and other classic characters from A Christmas Carol, showing how Charles Dickens mixed real life inspirations with his vivid imagination to conjure up unforgettable characters and a timeless tale, forever changing the holiday season into the celebration we know today. Based on Les Standiford’s 2008 book, The Man Who Invented Christmas: How Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol Rescued His Career and Revived Our Holiday Spirits, the movie brings the imagination of one of the world’s best-loved authors to vivid reality as he creates the masterpiece that has shaped modern-day Christmas celebrations for more than 150 years, directed by Bharat Nalluri (Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day) from a screenplay by Susan Coyne (Mozart in the Jungle, Slings and Arrows).
THE MAN WHO KNEW INFINITY The journey of self-taught mathematical prodigy Srinivasa Ramanujan and the journey of bringing his story to life on the page and screen both began with a letter. Some five or six years after the publication of The Man Who Knew Infinity, writer/director Matthew Brown and executive producer Tristine Skyler were visiting Brown’s aunt in Big Sur when Skylar noticed the book in Brown’s aunt’s library.
MARK FELT: THE MAN WHO BROUGHT DOWN THE WHITEHOUSE Writer/director Peter Landesman (Parkland, Concussion) was hired to write the screenplay in 2005, before he had directed any movies, when he was known as an award-winning investigative journalist and war correspondent.At that time, Jay Roach (Trumbo, Meet The Parents) was set to direct. Based on a true story of the most famous anonymous man in American history: Mark Felt, the FBI second-in-command who was the “Deep Throat” whistleblower in the 1970s Watergate scandal.
MARY SHELLEY Directed by Haifaa al-Mansour, based on an original screenplay by Australian screenwriter Emma Jensen. It is about writer Mary Shelley’s first love and romantic relationship with poet Percy Bysshe Shelley, which inspired Mary to write Frankenstein
MAUDIE Based on a true story, the outstanding independent film charts the unlikely romance between Maud Lewis, a folk artist who blossoms in later life, and the curmudgeonly recluse, Everett. Original screenplay by Sherry White.
THE MEDDLER came to life on the set of writer-director Lorene Scafaria’s first feature film, Seeking a Friend for the End of the World. Although Scafaria was thrilled to be helming her first film, she admits she was still in something of a daze after the death of her larger-than-life father, Joe, the year before. In the middle of her grief and this important time in her career, Scafaria’s mother, Gail, decided to relocate to Los Angeles to be near her only daughter.
MEGAN LEAVEY Megan Leavey, the movie, began on the day that Megan Leavey, the person, walked into LD Entertainment production offices and told her remarkable story.“We cried in our conference room,” recalls producer Jennifer Monroe. “It was incredible to see the war from a female Marine’s perspective.This took place during a time when women soldiers couldn’t be on the frontlines and here’s Megan, who’s able to go in front of the frontlines because she belongs to the K9 division.”
MIKE AND DAVE NEED WEDDING DATES The comedy Mike And Dave Need Wedding Dates takes the intriguing idea of two brothers finding dates for a wedding and runs with it, adding unexpected layers of heart and two outrageous new lead characters. Andrew J. Cohen and Brendan O’Brien have established themselves as two of the hottest names in comedy after writing Nicholas Stoller‘s “Neighbors” and “Neighbors 2” Andrew Jay Cohen (Screenwriter, Executive Producer) recently made his feature film directorial debut with The House starring Will Ferrell and Amy Poehler, which he also co-wrote and produced.
MILES AHEAD, inspired by events in his life, is a wildly entertaining, impressionistic, no-holds barred portrait of one of 20th century music’s creative geniuses, Miles Davis, featuring a career defining performance by Don Cheadle in the title role, who co-wrote the screenplay with Steven Baigelman, and makes his bravura directorial debut.
MIRACLES FROM HEAVEN “There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle, ” said Albert Einstein and in the uplifting Miracles from Heaven we experience the rousing portrait of a family suddenly discovering joy and promise in the most tumultuous moment of their lives.Based on Texas mom Christy Beam’s inspirational memoir, this astonishing true story of the girl rescued by an out-of-the-blue accident is directed by Patricia Riggen (who recently directed the superb The 33), from a screenplay by Randy Brown (Trouble with the Curve).
MISS YOU ALREADY From director Catherine Hardwicke (Twilight, Thirteen) comes Miss You Already, an honest and powerful story following two best friends through the highs and lows of life. The idea has been with writer Morwenna Banks for many years. “It is a work of fiction, but it happened that breast cancer touched my life and the lives of several people around me, within a short frame of time,” she recalls.
MOLLY’S GAME Based on the true story of a young, charismatic Olympic-hopeful skier and ‘Poker Princess’ who was arrested in the middle of the night by 17 FBI agents wielding automatic weapons, marks the directorial debut of renowned playwright and screenwriter Aaron Sorkin. Although Bloom’s 2014 memoir ends with her FBI arrest, the story of how Molly’s Game got to the big screen begins before Bloom even realized her reign was ending. When Bloom was still running a game at the Plaza Hotel in Manhattan, she met Executive Producer Leopoldo Gout at a party.
MY FATHER’S WAR Writer-director Craig Gardner’s My Father’s War will help facilitate healing for a generation of men, women and children (now adults) who were deeply affected by the South Africa’s Border War – on and off the battlefield.
NOEM MY SKOLLIE The riveting Noem My Skollie delivers on the themes of friendship, betrayal, forgiveness, acceptance, the desire for a better life, hope and love, and is set on the Cape Flats and in Pollsmoor prison, based on the life of John W. Fredericks, who also wrote the screenplay at the age of 60.
THE ODYSSEY French director Jerôme Salle thrives on a sense of adventure, never more so than when making The Odyssey, his epic take on the life of naval officer Jacques Cousteau whose underwater exploits made him a celebrated name all over the world..Written by Jérôme Salle and Laurent Turner, The Odyssey is based on Capitaine de la Calypso by Albert Falco and Yves Paccalet, and My Father, The Captain by Jean-Michel Cousteau.
PAUL, APOSTLE OF CHRIST Getting to the point of cameras rolling for a 30-day location shoot on the beautiful island of Malta for the thrilling new film was a years-long journey for writer-director Andrew Hyatt. It began with a personal fascination with Paul, arguably the most important person outside of Jesus in the New Testament. It then grew into a desire to create a biblically authentic, cinematically compelling exploration of the last days of Paul’s life.
PELÉ In partnership with Legends 10, Imagine Entertainment recruited the young writer/director team, Jeffrey and Michael Zimbalist to scribe the screenplay and helm the film project. Their successful background in documentary films where they previously had explored soccer as well as Brazil and Brazilian culture, would ensure the film would have a unique perspective and truthful tone.
PLEASE STAND BY Screenwriter Michael Golamco’s inspiration came from a NY Times article about young girls with autism attending a summer camp. One girl in particular said her hobby was writing fan fiction along the lines of Lord of the Rings. “That girl resonated with me. The article said girls with autism have problems connecting socially, but what sets them apart from boys is that girls really want to connect. The kernel of the Wendy character started to develop – the idea of a young girl who really wants to connect with the world but isn’t sure how, and the journey of her learning how.”
THE POST Throughout American history, there have been catalytic moments in which ordinary citizens must decide whether to put everything on the line–livelihoods, reputations, status, even freedom—to do what they believe to be right and necessary to protect the Constitution and defend American freedom. With The Post, multiple-Academy-Award-winning director Steven Spielberg excavates one such moment. The result is a high-wire drama based on the true events that unfolded when The Washington Post and The New York Times formed a pragmatic alliance in the wake of The Times’ incendiary exposure of the Top Secret study that would become known to the world as the Pentagon Papers.
PROFESSOR MARSTON AND THE WONDER WOMEN Writer/director Angela Robinson’s Professor Marston & The Wonder Women is the incredible true story of what inspired Harvard psychologist and inventor Dr. William Moulton Marston to create the iconic feminist superhero Wonder Woman.
QUEEN OF KATWE A young girl’s incredible journey from the streets of Uganda to a world-class chess player embodies the strength of the human spirit in the inspiring Queen of Katwe. It was an article by Tim Crothers in ESPN Magazine where John Carls (Rango, Where the Wild Things Are) first learned about the work of Sports Outreach, a faith-based organization that uses sports to make a difference in the lives of at-risk youth in the poorest areas of the world. Based on a remarkable true story, Queen of Katwe is directed by Mira Nair from a screenplay by William Wheeler.
RACE Based on the incredible true story of Jesse Owens, the legendary athletic superstar whose quest to become the greatest track and field athlete in history thrusts him onto the world stage of the 1936 Olympics, where he faces off against Adolf Hitler’s vision of Aryan supremacy. Race is an enthralling film about courage, determination, tolerance, and friendship, and an inspiring drama about one man’s fight to become an Olympic legend. Written by Joe Shrapnel and Anna Waterhouse and directed by Stephen Hopkins.
REBEL IN THE RYE The world of legendary writer J. D. Salinger is brought vividly to life in this revealing look at the experiences that shaped one of the most renowned, controversial, and enigmatic authors of our time.
THE REVENANT Inspired by true events, Alejandro G. Iñárritu’s masterful The Revenant is an epic story of survival and transformation on the American frontier, with Leonardo DiCaprio as legendary explorer Hugh Glass who undertakes a 200-mile odyssey through the vast and untamed West on the trail of the man who betrayed him: What begins as a relentless quest for revenge becomes a heroic saga against all. Based on Michael Punke’s The Revenant: A Novel of Revenge, screenplay by Mark L. Smith
ROMAN J. ISREAL, ESQ Writer-director Dan Gilroy teams with two-time Academy Award winner Denzel Washington to create the portrait of a layered, complex man whose life has been spent fighting for others’ civil rights – and paid a price for his activism.Gilroy wrote the film on spec specifically for Washington, feeling he was the only actor who could bring the character to life. “I wrote this movie for Denzel because of his talent and because Denzel is a man who believes in human dignity and the human spirit. Knowing who Denzel is in real life, he brings that part of himself to this character.”
RULES DON’T APPLY It was written, directed, and produced by Warren Beatty, who also stars as Howard Hughes, the billionaire movie mogul, famed aviator and legendary eccentric – who was both a rule-maker for many young stars and a rule-breaker – challenging the industry’s social mores and restrictive moral code.
SGT. STUBBY: AN UNLIKELY HERO Set against the backdrop of America’s entry into World War I and based on the incredible, true story of the unbreakable bond between a stray dog and a young Soldier, this animated film tells the real-life story of America’s most decorated dog, Sgt. Stubby, showing the world the true meaning of dedication, loyalty, bravery and heroism.Fun Academy Motion Pictures brings the early 20th century back to life for audiences of all ages to enjoy. But just as the real Stubby’s journey took him from homeless mutt to celebrated Soldier, his animated counterpart’s journey to the big screen has been quite the adventure … a story nearly a decade in the making.
SHEPHERDS AND BUTCHERS The true account of the legal process of capital punishment, and the inhumane treatment of prisoners on death row, which took place during the apartheid era in South Africa.The project had its inception in 2012 when producer, Anant Singh, sent his long-time collaborator, screenwriter/producer Brian Cox, a copy of Chris Marnewick’s award-winning novel to see if he would be interested in writing the screenplay. Cox responded to the material right away and very quickly wrote the initial adaptation.
SPOTLIGHT tells the astonishing true story of the Boston Globe’s Pulitzer Prize-winning “Spotlight” team of investigative journalists, who in 2002 shock the city and the world by exposing the Catholic Church’s systematic cover-up of widespread pedophilia perpetrated by more than 70 local priests. Written by Tom McCarthy and Josh Singer, and directed by McCarthy, it’s a deeply moving film that sheds light on a world where petrified kids are not ‘’prayed’’ on by priests, but ‘’preyed’’ on by those they respect as mediators of God.
STEVE JOBS In the provocative and stimulating Steve Jobs, Oscar-winning screenwriter Aaron Sorkin takes us backstage to paint a painfully human portrait of the late Apple icon.In the past five years alone Sorkin has won an Oscar for writing David Fincher’s The Social Network, earned a second nomination (alongside Steven Zaillian and Stan Chervin) for Bennett Miller’s Moneyball, and churned out three seasons of the social-media-fueled The Newsroom.
STRONGER The inspiring true story of Jeff Bauman, an ordinary man who captured the hearts of his city and the world to become the symbol of hope following the infamous 2013 Boston Marathon bombing. Screenplay by Boston local John Pollono (Small Engine Repair, Lost Girls) based on the best-selling book of the same name by Jeff Bauman and Bret Witter.
SUFFRAGETTE is an intriguing and captivating women’s film that tracks the story of the foot soldiers of the early feminist movement, women who were forced underground to pursue a dangerous game of cat and mouse with an increasingly brutal State. Screenplay by Abi Morgan’
SULLY ‘On January 15, 2009, the world witnessed the “Miracle on the Hudson” when Captain “Sully” Sullenberger glided his disabled plane onto the frigid waters of the Hudson River, saving the lives of all 155 aboard. However, even as Sully was being heralded by the public and the media for his unprecedented feat of aviation skill, an investigation was unfolding that threatened to destroy his reputation and his career. Now Oscar-winning director Clint Eastwood brings the story to the big screen, from a screenplay by Todd Komarnicki, based on the book Highest Duty by Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger and Jeffrey Zaslow, with Tom Hanks as Captain Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger.
THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE Based in part on Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist David Finkel’s book of the same name, Thank You for Your Service follows a group of U.S. soldiers returning from Iraq who struggle to integrate back into family and civilian life, while living with the memory of a war that threatens to destroy them long after they’ve left the battlefield.“The story was about stepping into the boots of a returning warrior. Being able to explore that from within the home was fascinating to me,” says Jason Hall—Academy Award-nominated screenwriter of American Sniper— who makes his directorial debut with Thank You for Your Service and also serves as its screenwriter, and spent two years adapting the multi-storied work into a screenplay.
THE 33 “Family is all we have,” is what keeps the flame of hope burning in the tense and taut untold true story of The 33, directed by Patricia Riggen from a screenplay by Mikko Alanne, Oscar nominee Craig Borten (Dallas Buyers Club) and Michael Thomas, based on the screen story by Oscar nominee José Rivera (The Motorcycle Diaries) and the book Deep Down Dark by Hector Tobar.
THEIR FINEST Though long-listed for the Orange Prize for Fiction in 2009, Lissa Evans’ novel Their Finest Hour and a Half went under the radar somewhat, it inspired powerhouse producers Amanda Posey and Stephen Woolley to bring it to the Big Screen seven years later.
TRUMBO recounts how Dalton (Bryan Cranston) used words and wit to win two Academy Awards and expose the absurdity and injustice under the blacklist, which entangled everyone from gossip columnist Hedda Hopper (Helen Mirren) to John Wayne, Kirk Douglas and Otto Preminger.The film is directed by Jay Roach, the winner of four Emmys, a Golden Globe and a Peabody Award, who is best known for directing such comedy classics as the Austin Powers trilogy, Meet the Parents, Meet the Fockers and The Campaign. The screenplay was written by John Mcnamara (Writer, Producer) is a writer, producer, showrunner and television creator.
TRUTH is a classic newsroom drama, a suspenseful behind-the-scenes procedural, a multi-character study—and also something more: In the words of former CBS News anchor Dan Rather, “This film is about what has happened to the reporting of news, how and why it’s happened, and why you should care.” For Writer-Director James Vanderbilt, a fascination with journalism initially drew him to the project.
VICEROY’S HOUSE As a writer-director, Gurinder Chadha has repeatedly translated her personal experience as a Punjabi-British woman into uplifting, crowd-pleasing movies, from her ground-breaking 1993 debut Bhaji On The Beach to her box-office smash Bend It Like Beckham, and now brings us the epic historical drama Viceroy’s House, the astonishing true story of the final months of British rule in India.
VICTORIA AND ABDUL: The extraordinary true story of the amazing and unlikely friendship between Queen Victoria and a young clerk, Abdul Karim, who becomes her teacher, her spiritual advisor, and her devoted friend.The screenplay is by Academy Award nominee Lee Hall (Billy Elliot), based on journalist Shrabani Basu’s book Victoria & Abdul: The True Story of the Queen’s Closest Confidant.
THE WALK Philippe Petit (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), guided by his real-life mentor, Papa Rudy (Ben Kingsley), is aided by an unlikely band of international recruits, who overcome long odds, betrayals, dissension and countless close calls to conceive and execute their mad plan. Robert Zemeckis, the master director of such marvels as Forrest Gump, Cast Away, Back to the Future, Polar Express and Flight, again uses cutting edge technology in the service of an emotional, character-driven story. The Screenplay is by Robert Zemeckis & Christopher Browne, based on the book “To Reach the Clouds” by Philippe Petit.
WAR DOGS From director Todd Phillips (The Hangover” trilogy) comes War Dogs, a comedic drama based on true events, following two friends in their early 20s living in Miami Beach during the Iraq War who exploit a little-known government initiative that allows smaller businesses to bid on U.S. Military contracts. The screenplay is by Stephen Chin and Todd Phillips & Jason Smilovic, based on the Rolling Stone article titled “Arms and the Dudes,” by Guy Lawson.
WHISKEY TANGO FOXTROT Based on the true adventures of war-reporter-in-the-making Kim Barker — and her acclaimed autobiography The Taliban Shuffle: Strange Days in Afghanistan and Pakistan – comes Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, a hilarious and heartfelt portrait of a woman getting her life together in a global hot spot where everything else seems to be falling apart.“Whiskey Tango Foxtrot” (military code for the letters WTF), is directed by Glenn Ficarra and John Requa, from a screenplay by Robert Carlock based on Kim Barker’s book The Taliban Shuffle.
WOODLAWN In Woodlawn, the faith of a chaplain and a star football player sparks a spiritual awakening and eases the racial tensions plaguing a high school team in Birmingham, Alabama in 1973. When Hollywood director Jon Erwin and his brother Andy decided to make a film featuring the true story of the Woodlawn High School football team giving their lives to Christ during desegregation in the 1970s, they never could have imagined the kind of impact it would have on the world.
THE YOUNG MESSIAH Inspired by Scripture and rooted in history, The Young Messiah is an inspirational story about the childhood of the Saviour and imagines a year in the boyhood of Jesus.Remaining true to the character of Jesus revealed in the Bible, it is directed by Cyrus Nowrasteh, who has worked in the motion picture and television business for over 25 years as a writer, producer, and director and gave us the equally inspirational The Stoning of Soraya M, and the screenplay was crafted by Nowrasteh’s wife Betsy Giffen Nowrasteh (who co-wrote The Stoning of Soraya M), adapted from Anne Rice’s fictional account of the childhood of a young Jesus Christ, entitled Christ the Lord: Out of Egypt
THE ZOOKEEPER’S WIFE Niki Caro (Whale Rider, North Country) directs The Zookeeper’s Wife from a screenplay by Angela Workman, adapted from Diane Ackerman’s nonfiction book of the same name which was based on Antonina’s diaries.