James McAvoy is Joining Benedict Cumberbatch in WikiLeaks Movie

November 9, 2012
Source: Variety

James McAvoy

Over the summer we learned that DreamWorks was looking at Jeremy Renner to lead their untitled drama about WikiLeaks and Julian Assange, the founder of the headline-making website which came under fire for exposing secret government information through leaked, classified documents, e-mails, cables and more. However, "Sherlock" star and Star Trek Into Darkness villain Benedict Cumberbatch has taken the lead role instead. In addition, Variety reports James McAvoy is now in talks to play Assange's former right-hand man Daniel Domscheit-Berg, who wrote one of the books on which the feature film is based.

Domscheit-Berg started working with Assange back in 2007, but ended up leaving the site years later after seeing that Assange failed to uphold any respect for journalistic integrity. It's believed that his departure from WikiLeaks resulted in Assange's release of over 250,000 classified diplomatic cables from the United States. In his book, there's plenty of criticism about Assange's handling of the Afghan War Diaries and more. The film will also take this angle as it portrays Assange first as a noble crusader and then a man becomes "drunk with power as he grows increasingly paranoid and obsessed with winning the war of information."

Joel Kinnaman was once rumored for the role, but a deal never came to fruition. The cast is still impressive just with these two names so far. Bill Condon (Dreamgirls) will direct the film which is based on WikiLeaks: Inside Julian Assange’s War on Secrecy and Inside WikiLeaks: My Time with Julian Assange at the World’s Most Dangerous Website. Josh Singer, a newcomer, will script the film that will likely garner some awards attention whenthe time comes. Enough time has passed that the film doesn't feel exploitative of the headlines, and a Social Network style drama can certainly be created. Interested?

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Reader Feedback - 4 Comments


No Australians could play Assange?

tomneedham on Nov 9, 2012


You mean like when an Australian is playing NORSE god or a BRITISH race car driver?

Kati on Nov 10, 2012


^ this.

castingcouch on Nov 11, 2012


...Nostalgia Night at the Movies...'Logan's Run' starring Michael York...great metaphor I think...Julian as a 'Logan 5'? ...Barack Obama as 'the Iceman'...aka; Monsanto Corp. ...Michael York & Julian Assange have such a strong's to future sequels...

Penny D. Lightbourne on Nov 13, 2012

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