Tom Hanks is in negotiations to portray Captain Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger in Clint Eastwood’s take on the true-life heroism dubbed Miracle on the Hudson.
Warner Bros. is behind the movie, which is being produced by Eastwood, Tim Moore and veteran producers Allyn Stewart and Frank Marshall.
The story of Sullenberg made national headlines in January 2009. Sullenberger and his crew had just taken off from LaGuardia Airport when both engines were knocked out by a flock of Canada geese.
The veteran pilot quickly realized there was no time to return to LaGuardia or reach another airport, so he made the decision to attempt a water landing on the Hudson. The plan worked, and all 155 people on board survived. He instantaneously achieved hero status and was dubbed “Captain Cool” by then-New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg.
Hanks was Eastwood and the studio’s first choice but also the most popular choice, going by reader polls that sprung up after THR first broke the news of Eastwood’s latest project. (Hanks, 58, is basically the same as Sullenberger was when he made his heroic landing.)
One thing that needs to be worked out is scheduling. Hanks is currently shooting Inferno with Ron Howard for Sony and Eastwood wants to begin shooting in September. Also, Hanks will need to spend time this fall promoting Bridge of Spies, the Cold War thriller directed by Steven Spielberg that hits theaters Oct. 14 in hopes of an awards run.