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DreamWorks has preemptively picked up the film rights to Pulitzer Prize-winning author Doris Kearns Goodwin‘s soon-to-be-released book The Bully Pulpit: Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and the Golden Age of Journalism.
The story tracks Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft and the birth of muckracking journalism. Goodwin’s Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln was the basis for DreamWorks’ Oscar-winning Abraham Lincoln biopic, Lincoln.
Goodwin has been working on the book, which will be released on Nov. 5 by Simon & Schuster, for seven years
According to DreamWorks, the book “tells the riveting story of two longtime friends who become bitter political opponents. Roosevelt’s fighting spirit and impulsive temperament stood in counterpoint to Taft’s deliberative, conciliatory disposition. Yet, their opposing qualities proved complementary, allowing them to create a rare camaraderie and productive collaboration until their brutal fight for the presidential nomination in 1912 divided them, their families, their colleagues, and their friends. It split the Republican Party in two, and altered the course of American history.”
“Doris has once again given us the best seats in the house where we can watch two dynamic American personalities in a battle for power and friendship,” said Steven Spielberg in a statement.
“Working with Steven Spielberg and DreamWorks on Lincoln seemed a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” said Goodwin. “I cannot imagine anything better than the prospect of working with them again, this time to bring Theodore Roosevelt and William Howard Taft to life.”
The book buy continues DreamWorks’ fascination with American historical figures. Apart from Lincoln, which received 12 Oscar nominations and grossed over $270 million, the company is developing a Martin Luther King Jr. biopic and a project on the Chicago Seven (which may have cooled recently as it lost its director, Paul Greengrass).
Goodwin was repped by ICM Partners in the deal.
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