Search form

Universal Finally Making Zamperini Tale

After more than 50 years, Universal Pictures will finally be bringing the true-life story of Louis Zamperini to the big screen after buying the rights to Laura Hillenbrand's bestselling book UNBROKEN: A WORLD WAR II STORY OF SURVIVAL, RESILIENCE, AND REDEMPTION, reports Deadline.com.

After more than 50 years, Universal Pictures will finally be bringing the true-life story of Louis Zamperini to the big screen after buying the rights to Laura Hillenbrand's bestselling book UNBROKEN: A WORLD WAR II STORY OF SURVIVAL, RESILIENCE, AND REDEMPTION, reports Deadline.com. The studio is eager to get this made, having begun negotiations with director Francis Lawrence (WATER FOR ELEPHANTS) and writer Scott Cooper (CRAZY HEART).

Zamperini's remarkable story begins with his troubled youth during the Depression. He went on to impress observers as the youngest ever U.S. team runner at the 1936 Olympics. World War II dashed his hopes at the 1940 games though, having drafted him into the Air Force. He subsequently crashed into the Pacific where he survived the elements, near starvation and sharks until he was picked up by the Japanese and put into a brutal prison camp. Later he has tortured by Japanese officer Mutsuhiro Watanabe until the end of the war, never breaking. After the war, he sunk into alcoholism and was consumed with nightmares. He decided to go to Japan and hunt down his tormentors, but his wife took him to see Billy Graham, which inspired him to forgive them instead, eventually meeting many of them in person.

Matthew Baer and Erwin Stoff are the producers. Mick Garris, who happens to be Zamperini's son-in-law, will exec producer.

Universal first planned to make Zamperini's tale in 1957 with Tony Curtis, but it stalled. Then in 1998, CBS aired a segment on Zamperini during the Nagano Olympics broadcast that sparked interest from Nicolas Cage. Universal attracted Antoine Fuqua to direct and Robert Schenkkan and Neil Tolkin both took a crack at the script, but the project never took off. Now the bestselling book from the SEABISCUIT author gives the story increased life.

Rick DeMott's picture

___________
Rick DeMott
Animation World Network
Director of Content
Creator of Rick's Flicks Picks

Tags 
randomness