EXCLUSIVE: HBO and Playtone partners Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman have found the subject of their next major miniseries. HBO has acquired the rights to The Wright Brothers. The new David McCullough book tells the story of Wilbur and Orville Wright, who sold and repaired bicycles out of an Ohio shop to pay for their passion: the invention of flying machines that ushered in the aeronautical age right after the turn of the 20th Century. In 1903 on the Outer Banks of North Carolina, the brothers changed history by successfully flying the first heavier-than-air-powered machine that carried a pilot.
It puts two-time Pulitzer Prize winner McCullough back with HBO for the third time, and for the second with Playtone, which exec produced John Adams, the miniseries that starred Paul Giamatti and Laura Linney. HBO also turned McCullough’s Truman into a telepic that starred Gary Sinise as Harry Truman.
Playtone previously exec produced Band Of Brothers, The Pacific, John Adams and From The Earth To The Moon for HBO, and the company has two more miniseries on the launch pad. The next to go into production is Lewis And Clark, starring Casey Affleck as Merriwether Lewis and Matthias Schoenaerts as William Clark; then there is Masters Of The Air, about the aviation battles in WWII, which Hanks and Goetzman are exec producing with Steven Spielberg, their partner on Band Of Brothers and The Pacific.
On the feature front, Playtone is ready to start production on My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2, a sequel that has brought back the entire cast, as John Corbett just signed to reprise alongside writer-star Nia Vardalos. The sequel takes place 15 years in the future, and while they are keeping the plot specifics under wraps, the focal point once again is a wedding.