Rathergate was the term given to the newsroom controversy surrounding denounced journalist and news anchor Dan Rather, who was excised from his position at the helm of CBS News after his scathing report on George W. Bush’s alleged war record blew up in the face of both him and his loyal producer and friend, Mary Mapes (Cate Blanchett). It’s a fascinating, complex slice of journalism history, and one that will underpin James Vanderbilt’s political drama Truth, which today unveiled a new trailer in the wake of its premiere at TIFF 2015.
Marking Vanderbilt’s directorial debut – following his producing role on David Fincher’s Zodiac – Truth stars Captain America: The Winter Solider alum Robert Redford in the role of the shunned reporter, who shines a spotlight on Bush’s time in the National Guard and questions whether the former POTUS went AWOL during the Vietnam War.
As today’s trailer suggests, the inflammatory report backfired in just about the worst way imaginable, bringing an end to Rather’s glittering career at the top of CBS News and threatening to sink the network entirely. Topher Grace, Elisabeth Moss, Bruce Greenwood, and Dennis Quaid join Redford and Blanchett for the drama.
Dan Rather’s controversial career will be laid bare when Truth opens for a limited theatrical release on October 16. For more on James Vanderbilt’s political drama, check out our own thoughts coming out of Toronto International Film Festival.
Truth is based on the book “Truth and Duty” by Mary Mapes. In the vein of “All The President’s Men” and “The Insider,” it is the incredible true story of Mary Mapes (played by Cate Blanchett), an award-winning CBS News Journalist and Dan Rather’s producer, who broke the Abu-Ghraib prison abuse story, among others. The film chronicles the story Mapes and Rather uncovered that a sitting US president may have been AWOL from the United States National Guard for over a year during the Vietnam War. When the story blew up in their face, the ensuing scandal ruined Dan Rather’s career, nearly changed a US Presidential election, and almost took down all of CBS News in the process.