Aaron Sorkin Adapting The Challenge for George Clooney
by Alex Billington
February 3, 2009
Back in August we reported that George Clooney's production company Smoke House had acquired the rights to Jonathan Mahler's novel The Challenge. Now six months later, Warner Brothers has hired political screenwriter Aaron Sorkin, of A Few Good Men, "The West Wing", and Charlie Wilson's War, to adapt the screenplay for George Clooney to potentially direct and star in. The book is a non-fiction story about the lengthy campaign waged by US Navy lawyer Charles Swift and Georgetown law professor Neal Katyal to ensure a fair trial for Salim Hamdan, the bodyguard and driver of Osama bin Laden.
While The Challenge is a courtroom drama, the film won't debate Hamdan's guilt or innocence, but instead chart the efforts of the two lawyers who decide to sue the president because they feel the US government has broken the law and violated the Constitution. With Sorkin writing the screenplay, we're certainly guaranteed a very sharp and biting drama that won't be the least bit boring, which is a good thing considering I wasn't too interested when I first reported this. If anyone is interested in hearing more about Salim Hamdan's trial, either read our previous post on the adaptation, or just pick up a copy of the book on Amazon.