Michael Hazanavicius, Oscar’s reigning Best Director for The Artist, is in talks to direct an adaptation of the nonfiction book In the Garden of Beasts. Tom Hanks is set to star as William Dodd, a professor who becomes America’s ambassador to the Hitler-run Germany just prior to World War II. Hanks is also producing with Gary Goetzman through their Playtone banner, and Deadline hears they are courting Natalie Portman to play William’s daughter. Hazanavicius is reportedly working on a new draft of the script with an unnamed writer that will soon be hired. With this level of talent attached and the awards-friendly subject matter, it should not surprise you to hear that the project is a priority for Universal Pictures co-chairman Donna Langley.
Hit the jump for more on the story by way of the synopsis for Erik Larson‘s book.