Casting a Hollywood biopic must be difficult, not least because you have to find contemporary stars who vaguely resemble past ones. That’s one of the many problems facing the producers of Trumbo, a biopic about the famous Hollywood screenwriter Dalton Trumbo who was blacklisted during the McCarthy era.
So far, casting has been going well, and today, the producers can scratch another name off their list, as they’ve found the man to play actor and Trumbo defender Kirk Douglas.
Dean O’Gorman, best known for his role as Fili in Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit movies, has come on board Trumbo in the part of the iconic Hollywood star. He’ll join an ever-growing cast that already includes Bryan Cranston in the titular role, David James Elliot as John Wayne, Diane Lane as Trumbo’s wife, and Helen Mirren as the gossip columnist Hedda Hopper.
Dalton Trumbo’s importance to Hollywood cannot be overstated, and it’s about time someone made a movie about him. A successful screenwriter, Trumbo was one of ten people called before Senator McCarthy’s House Committee on Un-American Activities as a possible Communist sympathizer. When he refused to “name names,” Trumbo was placed on a blacklist that banned him from working with any of the major studios.
He continued to work in Hollywood under pseudonyms, though it was not until 1960 that his work was once more recognized under his own name. Trumbo’s blacklisting is one of the darker aspects of the Hollywood of that period. Kirk Douglas helped to break down the blacklist by first hiring the writer for Spartacus, and then crediting Trumbo’s screenplay, despite the continued ban on employing him, so O’Gorman’s role is a very important one.
Jay Roach (The Campaign) is directing this particular biopic, from a script by John McNamara. Trumbo is currently filming, with a release date sometime in 2015. With another of the many stars now in place, we can expect to hear a bit more about this one any time now.
Source: The Hollywood Reporter