Spielberg & Day-Lewis May Reunite for 'Thank You for Your Service'?
by Ethan Anderton
June 5, 2013
After collaborating on the highly praised historical biopic Lincoln, director Steven Spielberg and star Daniel Day-Lewis may have another project that will bring them together again. Deadline just published a profile on actor turned writer Jason Dean Hall, the man behind Spielberg's next project American Sniper, and they briefly mentioned that Spielberg is also flirting with Hall's forthcoming adaptation of Thank You for Your Service, though it's still early in the game for anything to be official. David Finkel's book dives into the psychology of war and examines veterans returning home with post-traumatic stress disorder. Read on!
First, here's the official synopsis of the book:
No journalist has reckoned with the psychology of war as intimately as David Finkel. In The Good Soldiers, Finkel shadowed the men of the US 2-16 Infantry Battalion in Baghdad as they carried out the grueling fifteen-month “surge” that changed them all forever. Now Finkel has followed many of the same men as they’ve returned home and struggled to reintegrate – both into their family lives and into society at large.
In the ironically titled Thank You for Your Service, Finkel writes with tremendous compassion not just about the soldiers but about their wives and children. Where do soldiers belong after their homecoming? Is it reasonable, or even possible, to expect them to rejoin their communities as if nothing has happened? And in moments of hardship, who can soldiers turn to if they feel alienated by the world they once lived in? These are the questions Finkel faces as he revisits the brave but shaken men of the 2-16.
More than a work of journalism, Thank You for Your Service is an act of understanding — shocking but always riveting, unflinching but deeply humane, it takes us inside the heads of those who must live the rest of their lives with the realities of war.
In addition, though Spielberg is the only name mentioned in a revised version of the article at Deadline, SlashFilm was quick enough to notice that if Spielberg does the film, he would want to have Day-Lewis take the lead. And with a film on the subject of PTSD, you can almost guarantee an Oscar nomination. In a sad twist of fate, American Sniper actually follows a character who ended up being killed by another veteran suffering from the disorder. So it's easy to see why Spielberg might be interested in both of the stories. Of course, this project is still in the early stages of development, and Spielberg has a whole film with Bradley Cooper to complete between now and then, so we'll see what happens sometime down the road.