It appears that Aaron Sorkin has found his next directorial effort after making his debut with Molly’s Game, and this new project is actually an old one. Variety reports that Sorkin will direct the long-in-the-works political drama The Trial of the Chicago 7, which he first wrote back in 2007 with Steven Spielberg attached to direct. The writers strike caused a delay at that time, and Spielberg eventually moved on to The Adventures of Tintin and War Horse. The project was nearly revived in 2013 when Paul Greengrass became interested, but he dropped out when he and DreamWorks couldn’t come to an agreement on the budget.
The true-story drama chronicles the trial surrounding seven defendants who were arrested following anti-Vietnam War protests that took place in Chicago during the Democratic Convention in 1968. Interestingly enough, Sacha Baron Cohen is in early talks to play the role of Abbie Hoffman for Sorkin’s version, a part he was originally going to play in Spielberg’s iteration of the movie.
After the strength of Molly’s Game, Spielberg apparently became convinced that Sorkin is the right person to direct Trial of the Chicago 7 and get the project off the ground once and for all. The Oscar-winning The Social Network scribe most recently wrote a new adaptation of To Kill a Mockingbird for Broadway starring his Newsroom star Jeff Daniels, which debuts this fall.
Marc Platt, the producer behind La La Land, is producing Trial of the Chicago 7 for Spielberg’s Amblin Entertainment.