Hanks & Streep To Star In Spielberg’s True Story Newspaper Drama

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UPDATE: The Post will now not only be the next film for all three, but prep is rushing for a May shoot start, and a theatrical release later this year just in time for the 2017 Awards Season race. (Read more updates in the last three paragraphs.)

Finally – Meryl Streep is going to be in a Steven Spielberg movie.

Adding to the star power: she’ll be joining Tom Hanks and Spielberg for their fifth actor/director collaboration. Their previous films include: Saving Private RyanCatch Me If You CanThe Terminal, and Bridge of Spies.

The film is titled The Post. Set in 1971, it will dramatize The Washington Post’s legal battle to publish the classified documents known as the Pentagon Papers. That secret government report focused on America’s role in Vietnam, and exposed how President Johnson “systematically lied, not only to the public but also to Congress.”

Hanks will play Post editor Ben Bradlee, and Streep has been cast as publisher Kay Graham. This will mark the first time that Hanks and Streep have starred together on-screen.

For the record, Streep has worked with Spielberg once before, but only through voice work. She played the Blue Fairy Mecha in his rendition of Stanley Kubrick‘s A.I.: Artificial Intelligence.

With the heightened focus on the role of the press (and leaks) in our democracy, given the contentious relationship between the media and President Trump (who called them “the enemy”), it’s fascinating to see this kind of star power be attracted to material in the vein of All The President’s Men, or the recent Best Picture winner Spotlight.

It’s a co-production between 20th Century Fox and Spielberg’s Amblin Entertainment.

As updated above, production will now begin in May 2017 for a late 2017 release. Spielberg’s Ready Player One is currently in post-production and on schedule for its March 2018 release. The Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara, which Spielberg had originally planned to shoot and release this year, is now pushed indefinitely. Hanks has also pushed his WWII thriller Greyhound to make The Post immediately possible.

Along with wanting to capitalize on the current zeitgeist surrounding “freedom of the press” issues that The Post will tackle, two obstacles have confronted the Mortara production: Oscar Isaac has dropped out due to personal family issues related to the death of his mother, plus Spielberg has struggled to find a child actor he’s happy with who will play the title real-life character.

As far as the fifth Indiana Jones movie that’s due in theaters summer of 2019, no news related to that production likely means it’s still on track. Mortara may shoot after that and make a 2019 Oscar run.

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