Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg Rumored for Cold War Spy Movie

Source: Flickr

Tom Hanks may be looking to team up with director Steven Spielberg on a new project, Variety reports. According to the publication, Hanks has signed on to an as-yet-untitled movie that Spielberg is looking to direct for DreamWorks. Spielberg and Marc Platt will co-produce, and Matt Charman will write the script, which is based on a true story of Cold War espionage.

Hanks will play the lawyer James B. Donovan, who was hired by the CIA to sneak past the iron curtain and help the U.S. negotiate the return of a pilot who was taken as prisoner after his spy plane crashed in Russia. Donovan published a book about the case, called Strangers on a Bridge, but it’s unclear if the screenplay will be adapted from that memoir. His work with the U.S. and Russian governments on the case, which saw the Russian spy leader Vilyam Genrikhovich Fisher released by the U.S. and exchanged for the fighter pilot, won Donovan the Distinguished Intelligence Medal.

Variety said that Spielberg is currently attached to a number of pictures, including Robopocalypse and Montezuma. Sources close to the director who spoke to Variety said that he has not yet chosen a new film to work on and is taking a bit of a break, though he would be interested in working with Hanks again.

Spielberg and Hanks have made three films together: Saving Private Ryan, Catch Me If You Can, and The Terminal. Saving Private Ryan is one of the most acclaimed films of both of their careers, being considered a landmark war movie and landing at No. 77 on the American Film Institute’s list of the 100 greatest movies of all time.

Saving Private Ryan landed Spielberg an Academy Award, and Hanks was nominated for an Oscar for his role as U.S. Army Rangers Capt. John H. Miller. That film was also the top-grossing movie of 1998, according to Box Office Mojo. The historical wartime material of this untitled project is obviously something that has done well in the hands of Hanks and Spielberg in the past.

DreamWorks declined to give Variety a comment, but the studio is likely hoping that the project gets finalized, as Hanks and Spielberg are both guaranteed box office draws and awards show favorites. Hanks was recently ranked the fourth most bankable name in Hollywood and is the top-earning actor domestically. Hanks’ most recent movie, the modern pirate drama Captain Phillips, was nominated for Best Picture at the Oscars this year.

Hanks is currently shooting A Hologram for the King, based on the Dave Eggers novel of the same name about a businessman who looks to sell his big idea to a king in Saudi Arabia. The novel was a finalist for the National Book Award in 2012, and the screenplay was adapted from the book by Tom Tykwer. That movie is due out later this year.

More From Wall St. Cheat Sheet:

Follow Jacqueline on Twitter @Jacqui_WSCS