Clint Eastwood has finally announced his next directing project. The nearly 87 year-old screen legend will be helming 15:17 to Paris, the story of three young Americans who helped prevent a terrorist attack aboard a French passenger train that had to potential to kill over 500 people. Deadline was the first to report.
Based on the book The 15:17 to Paris: The True Story of a Terrorist, a Train, and Three American Heroes, written by the real-life heroes Anthony Sadler, Alec Skarlatos, and Spencer Stone, with the help of Stanford graduate fellow Jeffrey E. Stern, about their role in the 2015 Thalys train attack. The group of three friends helped prevent Ayoub al-Khazzani, who was armed with an AK-47, a pistol, a box cutter, and enough ammunition to obliterate every passenger, from causing any damage to the train. Skarlatos was an Oregon Army National Guard Specialist, while Stone was a US Air Force Airman first class, and Sadler was a senior at California State University, Sacramento. They were assisted by two Frenchmen, and a British man.
Dorothy Blyskal adapted the screenplay. Blyskal served as staff assistant for Eastwood’s 2016 film Sully. She also served as production secretary for Logan starring Hugh Jackman and Patrick Stewart. She was a production assistant for Warner Bros. historian drama Live by Night, directed/written by Ben Affleck, upcoming comedy The House starring Will Ferrell and Amy Poehler, and Netflix’s upcoming film War Machine starring Brad Pitt and Tilda Swinton.
17:15 to Paris is certainly keeping his producing team in the Eastwood production family. Producers signed on include Tim Meyer, who previously served as executive producer/unit production manager on multiple Eastwood films, Kristina Rivera, who previously worked as assistant to Mr. Eastwood for multiple films, and Jessica Meier, who previously worked as an assistant to producer Robert Lorenz for multiple Eastwood films.
Eastwood is making it a habit of adapting true stories of American heroes. The four-time Oscar winner made American Sniper in 2014, starring Bradley Cooper, which was based on the true story of Navy S.E.A.L. sniper Chris Kyle. And then last year, he directed Sully, which starred Tom Hanks as US Airways pilot Chelsey Sullenberger, who managed to land a passenger jet on the Hudson river.
Eastwood has won four Oscars: Best Picture and Best Director for Unforgiven in 1992, and Best Picture and Best Director for Million Dollar Baby in 2004 (both of which he was also nominated for acting in). He has also been nominated for the Academy Award for Best Director/Best Picture for films Mystic River and Letter to Iwo Jima, and had American Sniper nominated for Best Picture.
17:15 to Paris is said to be casting now (perhaps his actor son Scott Eastwood will score a part?) and expected to begin filming by the end of the year.