The story of John Chapman, an American war hero, who was the first U.S. Air Force Combat Controller to be awarded the Air Force Cross, is coming to the screens with Thruline Entertainment ordering an adaptation for the upcoming biography of Chapman: The Controller: Medal of Honor Recipient John Chapman (working title.) Chapman’s heroic act commenced in 2002 when, while fighting in Afghanistan, Chapman fought off Taliban soldiers, saving 23 American lives. After spending years on the analyses of drone footage that could prove that Chapman continued fighting solo after being abandoned by his SEAL Team 6, the Air Force went through vigorous debates regarding whether or not the Air Force Cross should be upgraded to the Medal of Honor, the highest ranking military recognition. This controversy was investigated in an article for Newsweek.
The script for the adaptation is being written by Michael Russel Gunn, who recently sold a script titled The Virginia, which follows the life of young George Washington with Bradley Cooper set to star in the leading role. The team at Thruline have set the bio-pic to be a top priority, and the producers Ron West, Matt Garelik and Gunn himself are working in close partnership with the authors of Chapman’s biography, Dan Schilling and Lori Longfritz.
“We are honored to be the trustees of John Chapman’s story… Dan and Lori are providing us with incredible architecture from which to create this film and I can’t think of a better screenwriter than Michael (Gunn) to bring his story to life,” said West in a statement published by Deadline. Thruline has previously produced the hit comedy series, Psych for USA and worked with Imagine Dragons on the documentary, Believer, which was sold to HBO, and two more recent documentaries Batman and Bill and Obey Giant, about the famous wrestler, Andre the Giant.