Michael Keaton's McDonald's Mogul Biopic Plants Flag in 2016 Awards Race

Paul Drinkwater/NBC
Michael Keaton

The biopic stars Keaton as McDonald's mogul Ray Kroc.

John Lee Hancock's The Founder will hit theaters in the U.S. Nov. 25, 2016, the heart of awards season.

The biopic stars Michael Keaton — fresh off his turn in the Oscar-winning Birdman — as Ray Kroc, who built McDonald's into the largest fast-food chain in the world. FilmNation and The Combine are producing the indie film, with The Weinstein Co. snapping up U.S. rights.

Written by Robert Siegel (Big Fan), The Founder chronicles how Ray Kroc, a salesman from Illinois, met Mac and Dick McDonald, who were running a burger operation in 1950s Southern California. Kroc was impressed by the brothers' speedy system of making the food and saw franchise potential. He maneuvered himself into a position to be able to pull the company from the brothers and create a billion-dollar empire.

The tone of the script has been described as being akin to The Social Network and There Will Be Blood.

TWC has had good luck launching awards contenders over the Thanksgiving holiday, a crop that includes The King's Speech and The Imitation Game.

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