Mike Fleming over at Deadline has received word that Paul Greengrass (‘The Bourne Ultimatum,’ ‘Green Zone,’ ‘Bloody Sunday’) is looking to make ‘Memphis,’ his long delayed Dr. Martin Luther King biopic, his next directorial effort.
Written by Greengrass based on his own research, the drama chronicles Dr. King’s final days as he struggled to organize a protest march on behalf of striking black municipal sanitation workers in Memphis, Tennessee, where he was slain. That storyline is juxtaposed with an intense manhunt for King’s assassin James Earl Ray, involving some of the federal authorities who, under J. Edgar Hoover’s orders, had dogged King’s every step with wiretaps and whispering campaigns before the civil rights leader’s death.
The historical drama was shelved last year after Universal Pictures opted out of producing leaving Greengrass and his producer Scott Rudin (‘Moneyball’) without the necessary financing required to shoot the film. Greengrass and Rudin moved on, turning their attention to ‘Captain Phillips,’ a Somali pirate heist drama starring Tom Hank.
Now it appears that ‘Memphis’ is back on track and gaining some momentum, with Deadline’s sources claiming that producers at Veritas and Wild Bunch are in talks to finance the passion project.