It’s been the better part of a year since we wrote about Leonardo DiCaprio and Jonah Hill’s project that would bring the Atlanta Olympics bombing to the big screen. That changed today when it was reported that director Paul Greengrass is circling the film. Based on Marie Brenner’s 1997 Vanity Fair article “The Ballad of Richard Jewell”, the untitled picture would center on Jewell, the heroic security guard who discovered a suspicious backpack during the 1996 games, and was later vilified as a possible terrorist suspect. Hit the jump for more.
Deadline reports that Greengrass is considering coming on board the Jewell film, but details are slim at this point. His involvement would certainly paint this picture with an interesting brush since Greengrass is known for spotlighting strong central characters who find themselves mired in a tug of war between opposing factions. Honestly, the project was already interesting enough just based on the real-life events. Then it gained a boost with word that Oscar-nominated Hill would be stepping into the lead role of Jewell, with Oscar-nominated DiCaprio starring as a lawyer Jewell knew casually, “a Southern attorney who mostly did real estate closings and seemed in over his head, but he guided Jewell through a hellish Twilight Zone that went on even after the FBI officially cleared Jewell’s name three months later.”
Now that a director of Greengrass’ caliber is at least circling the project, we should start to hear a bit more about it in the coming months. DiCaprio will produce via his Appian Way banner along with Hill, Jennifer Davisson Killoran, and Kevin Misher, who brought the article to their attention. DiCaprio next stars in writer-director Alejandro González Iñárritu’s 19th century frontier adventure/drama, The Revenant. Hill, who recently enjoyed the success of 22 Jump Street, next stars in Rupert Goold’s drama True Story as journalist Michael Finkel opposite James Franco.