One of the most exciting projects announced over the last few years, at least to me, was one that never even happened. In 2014 we learned Zero Dark Thirty director Kathryn Bigelow was planning to team with Tom Hardy for The True American, a drama based on remarkable events following 9/11. That project never got rolling, but now it's back on with Hardy still attached and a new director in Pablo Larrain.
Larrain, who is following up a great couple of years that included Jackie, Neruda, and The Club, has picked up the film's reins while Bigelow moves to producer. The story it tells is incredible, taking place in the volatile days following 9/11 when anti-Muslim hatred was at an all-time high. That was when Mark Stroman took it upon himself to kill anyone he perceived as Arab. He murdered two people and shot a third, Bangladeshi-American and military veteran Rais Bhuiyan in the face, but he survived. Rais managed to avoid brain damage but lost sight in one of his eyes. He gained notoriety when he pleaded in court to save Stroman from the death penalty.
This is absolutely the stuff Oscars are made, but more importantly it's a movie that couldn't be coming at a better time. We need material like this that shows the value of kindness and forgiveness, especially between cultures that are too often portrayed as adversarial. Let's hope this one gets moving soon.