Filmmaker George Clooney to direct Movie on British Phone Hacking Scandal 2014-2015
LOS ANGELES: Actor-filmmaker George Clooney will direct a movie about the phone hacking scandal that ensnared quantity of Britain’s biggest media figures and politicians, studio Sony Pictures Entertainment said on Wednesday. “Hack Attack” draws on on the 2014 book of the same name by journalist Nick Davies, who details how British newspapers hacked the telephone voice mails of celebrities, members of the royal family and crime victims to gain private know-how.
“This has all the elements – lying, corruption, blackmail – at the highest levels of government coming from the biggest newspaper in English. And the fact it is true is the best part,” Clooney said within a statement. “Nick is a brave and stubborn reporter and we consider it an honor to put his book to video.” The phone hacking scandal led media mogul Rupert Murdoch to close the News of the World newspaper in 2011 and abandon a $12 billion bid for British pay TV broadcaster BSkyB following a public and political furor, and an exodus of advertisers. The scandal took arrests of top British editors and reached Prime Minister David Cameron, whose media chief Andy Coulson was forced to resign in 2011 over phone hacking when he was News of society editor. Production on the film is scheduled to start next year, the Sony Corp-owned film studio said. Clooney, 53, additionally produce the movie with partner Grant Heslov through their studio Smokehouse, the company behind 2012’s Oscar-winning “Argo” and this year’s World War II art heist caper “The Monuments Males.” Clooney, who won a best supporting actor Oscar in 2006, also earned a best director Oscar nomination that year for “Good Night, and Good Luck,” about broadcast news legend Edward W. Murrow. He is the son of broadcast TV journalist Nick Clooney.