LOS ANGELES • Clint Eastwood is to direct the heroic true story of three Americans who stopped a terrorist plot on a train bound for Paris, American media said on Thursday.
The yet-untitled project will be based on The 15:17 To Paris: The True Story Of A Terrorist, A Train, And Three American Heroes, written by friends Anthony Sadler, Alek Skarlatos and Spencer Stone, with journalist Jeffrey Stern, entertainment website Deadline Hollywood reported.
In August 2015, the trio of friends - one of whom was in the Oregon National Guard and another in the United States Air Force - foiled a gunman who boarded a train from Amsterdam to Paris with enough ammunition to kill 500 people.
They charged and overpowered 25-year-old Moroccan national Ayoub El Khazzani after he came out of a toilet armed with a Kalashnikov assault rifle, an automatic pistol and a box cutter, shooting and seriously wounding a passenger.
The three have since been hailed as heroes in the US and France, where they were awarded the Legion of Honour, the country's highest decoration. El Khazzani is in custody in France, awaiting trial on various terror-related charges, including attempted murder.
The movie follows a pattern in Eastwood's recent output of recounting real stories of heroism, following American Sniper (2014), about bemedalled Navy Seal sniper Chris Kyle; and Sully (2016), about airline pilot Chesley Sullenberger, who in 2009 managed to land a plane on the Hudson River after it malfunctioned.
Industry daily Variety said Eastwood is hoping to start shooting later this year.