The project is based on Anand Giridharadas’ nonfiction book of the same name, which is set in Texas in the days following 9/11. It follows the story of Rais Bhuiyan, a Muslim immigrant and Bangladesh Air Force veteran who narrowly survived a killing spree that took the lives of two other immigrants. Employed at a Dallas-area convenience store as he established himself in America, Bhuiyan worked to have his attacker, self-styled “Arab-slayer” Mark Stroman, spared from execution.
This is a project that has been kicking around for a few years now, with Kathryn Bigelow attached to direct at one point, but now it’s moving forward with Bigelow taking a producers role on the film.
Megan Ellison, Bigelow, Matthew Budman and Juan de Dios Larraín will produce.
Larraín is fast becoming one of the most sought after international directors after his recent effort Jackie, starring Natalie Portman as the former First Lady in the days following the assassination of John F. Kennedy, was nominated for three Oscars. His Spanish-language film Neruda, a twist on the biopic genre about the eponymous Nobel Prize-winning poet, was made in Chile and debuted at the Cannes Film Festival while his 2012 political satire No was nominated in the Best Foreign Language Film category.
The True American: Murder and Mercy in Texas was published in 2014 by W.W. Norton & Company.
Larraín is repped by CAA and Management 360. Hardy is repped by CAA and United Agents in the UK.