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Paul Greengrass Finally Plans To Make MLK Film ‘Memphis’ His Next Project

Written by on November 19, 2012 

Although there has been talk for nearly two years now regarding Paul Greengrass and his Martin Luther King Jr. assassination film Memphis, it looks like the project is finally coming together. After Universal pulled the plug on the drama soon after they picked it up, financing was said to come together late last year, but it never happened, so the United 93 director instead went and shot his Somali pirate movie Captain Phillips with Tom Hanks.

Now, according to Deadline, it looks like producers at Veritas and Wild Bunch will be coming together to support the project. Based on Greengrass’ original research, the film chronicles King’s life during the days leading up to his killing at the hands of James Earl Ray (the project is said to heavily include the manhunt for this man). By 1968, the year of his assassination, King’s marriage was failing and his drinking, smoking and infamous infidelity were reaching new heights. He had alienated President Lyndon Johnson with his outspoken protest of the Vietnam War and was on the outs with the rising Black Power movement over his interest in labor organization and helping the urban poor.

Suffice to say, it will seemingly be a different look at the icon than we’re used to in Hollywood. The previous plan was to shoot the film in time for MLK weekend this year and with it clearly missing the mark for next year, perhaps a 2014 release is in the cards if all comes together on this one. In the meantime, Greengrass’ Hanks-starring drama is aiming for an October 2013 bow.

Are you looking forward to Greengrass’ MLK movie?

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