Actor and director Clint Eastwood will be turning 87 years old this year, but that doesn’t mean he’s slowing down. Not a bit. Fresh off directing the 2016 box office hit “Sully,” Eastwood is now setting his sights on “The 15:17 to Paris,” a movie that will continue the “Dirty Harry” star’s trend of highlighting red-blooded American heroes.
Based on the book “The 15:17 To Paris: The True Story Of A Terrorist, A Train, And Three American Heroes,” the film will focus on the story of Anthony Sadler, Alek Skarlatos, and Spencer Stone, the three men who thwarted a terrorist attack after an ISIS member boarded a train headed to Paris in August 2015.
The three men had collective experience in martial arts, the Air Force, and National Guard — and managed to subdue the terrorist and prevent what likely would have been the deaths of hundreds of people.
The script for the film, written by Dorothy Blyskalbut, is reportedly complete; but there is no word yet on filming dates or casting.
Eastwood’s last two movies have focused on dissecting the heroic deeds of American men, such as the late Navy SEAL Chris Kyle and the heroic pilot Chesley Sullenberger, of the so-called “Miracle on the Hudson” fame.
“American Sniper,” the movie about Chris Kyle, and “Sully,” the movie about Sullenberger, did phenomenally well at the box office and earned high praise from critics.
While a typical producer might take the story of Stone, Sadler and Skarlatos and make some second-rate, half-true action thriller out of it, Eastwood is all but guaranteed to create another thoughtful, exciting masterpiece centered around a gripping event but also looking into the positives and negatives of a heroic deed’s aftermath. Aside from the book rights, the deal apparently includes the rights to the three men’s lives.
The film will not mark Eastwood’s first encounter with his three main subjects. He presented them with the “Hero Award” at the 2016 Guy’s Choice Awards. Skarlatos later told People, “I’ve seen all of his movies growing up. Actually meeting him in person, having him give us the award … Then we talked with him for like 10 minutes afterwards. It was one of the coolest experiences that has happened to us so far.”