This weekend Film School Rejects made an interesting discovery: a listing in Production Weekly that has Paul Greengrass as the director of The Trial of the Chicago 7. You’ll remember that this film, about the riots at the 1968 Democratic National Convention and the astonishing conspiracy trial of the anti-war movement leaders that followed, was going to be directed by Steven Spielberg. He fell off the project (as he does), leaving Aaron Sorkin still working on a script in development hell.
Greengrass is obviously an amazing choice for the film. Just go and watch Bloody Sunday and tell me that this man wouldn’t create riot scenes the likes of which we have never experienced on film. In the hands of Greengrass Chicago 7 could be a serious masterpiece.
Unfortunately I’m hearing from reliable sources that he’s passed on the project. I’ve dropped an email to Paul, but he’s balls-deep in editing Green Zone right now, so I’m not holding my breath for a reply. I know that he has nothing solid planned post-Green Zone, but definitely has a lot of opportunities in front of him. It’ll be interesting to see where he goes next. If it is Chicago 7 I’ll be the last guy to complain. And the first guy to beg for an extra role. I look like a hippie!