Our sister site Deadline has reported exclusively that Steven Spielberg has just signed on to direct Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep in the film “The Post,” written by Liz Hannah. The film will tell the story about how the Washington Post helped break the story about the Pentagon Papers in 1971.
The Pentagon Papers were leaked by military analyst Daniel Ellsberg and exposed troubling, theretofore unknown information about how the White House was conducting the Vietnam War. Hanks will play Post editor Ben Bradlee and Streep will play publisher Kay Graham, who fought in court to defend their right to publish the documents.
This film couldn’t be more timely with the Donald Trump administration currently 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.
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.
Does “The Post” sound like surefire awards bait to you? Comment below, and discuss this and more in our forums.