Steven Spielberg took the two stars of his upcoming historical drama “The Post,” Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks, to the nation’s capital this week so they could the see workings of the Washington Post up close and personal. The film, which is to begin shooting soon, is set against the backdrop of the newspaper’s pursuit of the truth behind the escalation of the Vietnam War during the first years of the Nixon administration. Hanks is to portray the Post’s cantankerous editor Ben Bradlee while Streep is to be the publisher, society doyenne Katharine Graham,
Graham, who took over the paper after her husband committee suicide, has her mettle tested when Bradlee pushes her to publish the Pentagon Papers in 1971. These were classified documents that had been leaked by military analyst Daniel Ellsberg. Collectively, they exposed the secret machinations of the White House and the lies that had been told to the American people about the controversial conflict.
This film couldn’t be more timely with the Donald Trump administration at odds with the news media. He even called the press “the enemy of the American people.” When you consider that along with the film’s pedigree and subject matter, you couldn’t ask for a more Oscar-friendly project — at least on paper. Does “The Post” sound like surefire awards bait to you? Comment below, and discuss this and more in our forums.
Spielberg, Hanks and Streep have won a combined eight Academy Awards. Thus far Spielberg and Hanks have collaborated on four films together as director and star: “Saving Private Ryan” (1998), “Catch Me if You Can” (2002), “The Terminal” (2004) and “Bridge of Spies” (2015). Of those “Ryan” and “Spies” were both nominated for Best Picture.
But this is the first collaboration between Spielberg and Streep, unless you count Streep’s voice role as Blue Mecha in “A.I. Artificial Intelligence” (2001). This year Streep just celebrated her record 20th Oscar nomination (Best Actress for “Florence Foster Jenkins”), and she recently feuded with Trump over his mockery of Serge Kovaleski, a journalist with a disability, so this seems likely to further intensify the debate over the role of entertainers in politics.