EXCLUSIVE: It would be hard to come up with a movie following a faster track than The Post. Steven Spielberg only said yes this past Monday to direct Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep in the Fox/Amblin co-production and they’ve all been clearing their schedules to start production in late May. Deals are still being finalized, but that means the film will be ready for release to qualify for this coming Oscar season.
The drama focuses on the Washington Post’s role in exposing the Pentagon Papers in 1971, and how the Post’s editor Ben Bradlee (Hanks) and publisher Kay Graham (Streep) joined the New York Times in challenging the federal government over their right to publish them. The film is based on the Liz Hannah script, with Amy Pascal, Spielberg, and Kristie Macosko Krieger (Bridge Of Spies) producing. Rachel O’Connor will be executive producer along with Star Thrower Entertainment’s Tim and Trevor White, and Adam Somner.
This certainly perks up next Oscar season where buzz so far has centered on such films as Kathryn Bigelow’s untitled film about the Detroit riots of 1967, Paul Thomas Anderson’s untitled pic with Daniel Day Lewis, Adam McKay’s Dick Cheney film, Christopher Nolan’s WWII pic Dunkirk, and Alexander Payne’s Downsizing. The Post immediately joins that list.
It is the second Oscar bait picture to focus on the storied Washington Post editor Bradlee, after All The President’s Men. While that film got upset in the Best Picture category by Rocky (as did nominees Network and Taxi Driver), Jason Robards did win Best Supporting Actor for playing Bradlee. His son, Ben Bradlee Jr, was part of the Pulitzer Prize-winning team of Boston Globe reporters whose expose of pedophile priests and the church cover up in Boston formed the basis for Best Picture winner Spotlight. John Slattery played Bradlee Jr.