Snowden


Snowden Information

Snowden is an upcoming 2016 American-German biographical political thriller film directed by Oliver Stone and written by Stone and Kieran Fitzgerald. The film is based on the novels The Snowden Files by Luke Harding and Time of the Octopus by Anatoly Kucherena. The film stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Shailene Woodley, Melissa Leo, Zachary Quinto, Tom Wilkinson, Scott Eastwood, Logan Marshall-Green, Timothy Olyphant, Ben Schnetzer, LaKeith Lee Stanfield, Rhys Ifans and Nicolas Cage. Filming began on February 16, 2015 in Munich, Germany. Snowden is scheduled to be released in North America on September 16, 2016, by Open Road Films.

Synopsis

The true story follows Edward Snowden, an American computer professional who leaked classified information from the National Security Agency (NSA) to The Guardian in June 2013.

Cast

Production

Development

When Oliver Stone was first approached to helm the film, he hesitated. He was working on another controversial subject, about the last few years in the life of Martin Luther King Jr., and did not immediately wish to tackle something that incendiary again. Albeit hesistant to direct the film, a series of events and persuasion prompted him to finally agree to direct it. Glenn Greenwald, the journalist who worked with Poitras to break the Snowden story, asked him of some advice while a couple of months later, Snowden's Russian lawyer, Anatoly Kucherena contacted him via his producer asking Stone to meet him. On June 2, 2014, it was announced that Stone and Moritz Borman acquired the rights to the nonfiction book The Snowden Files by Luke Harding, and that Stone would write and direct a film based on it. His desire to make a film on Martin Luther King Jr. was scrapped since he was commited to direct Snowden. On June 10, 2014, Stone acquired the rights to another book, Time of the Octopus by Anatoly Kucherena. Stone would use both books as the sources to write his screenplay. On November 6, 2014, Open Road Films acquired the U.S. rights to the film, while Wild Bunch was set to handle foreign sales. Deadline confirmed on November 10, 2014 that Endgame Entertainment had boarded the film to produce. In April 2015, WikiLeaks revealed that Stone paid $700,000 for the rights to Harding's book and $1 million for rights to Kucherena's novel.

Pre-production

Before production began, Stone and Gordon-Levitt personally met Snowden in Moscow in 2015 where he had been living there in exile with his girlfriend Lindsay Mills since evading the U.S. government's attempts to arrest him for espionage. Gordon-Levitt described him as a person who is akin to Philippe Petit (Gordon-Levitt starred as Petit in the 2015 film The Walk). However, problem arose in Russia as companies that were affiliated to the U.S. refused to get involved in the project. Furthermore, no studio were ready to support it. It became extremely difficult for Stone who had to finance everything along with the producer. Eventually, financing came through from France and Germany with contracts being signed eight days before production began.

Casting

On September 21, 2014, Joseph Gordon-Levitt was in talks to play Edward Snowden, the American computer professional who leaked classified information from the National Security Agency (NSA) to the mainstream media starting in June 2013. On November 10, 2014, news confirmed that Gordon-Levitt would be starring in the lead role. On November 14, 2014, Shailene Woodley was in final talks to join the film to play Snowden's girlfriend, Lindsay Mills. On February 2, 2015, Scott Eastwood joined the cast to play an NSA agent. On February 4, 2015, three more actors joined the cast; Melissa Leo will play documentary filmmaker Laura Poitras, Zachary Quinto will play Glenn Greenwald, the journalist chosen by Snowden to leak sensitive information, and Tom Wilkinson will play Ewen MacAskill, defense and intelligence correspondent for The Guardian, who helped report the Snowden story. On February 13, 2015, Variety reported that Ben Schnetzer had also joined the film. On February 19, 2015, Timothy Olyphant joined the film to star as a CIA agent who befriended Snowden before he fled to Russia, and Rhys Ifans and Joely Richardson were added to the cast of the film on February 20, 2015. Nicolas Cage also signed on to play the role of a former US Intelligence official on February 23, 2015. Keith Stanfield was added to the cast on February 25, 2015 to play a National Security Administration co-worker and a close friend to Snowden.

For his role as Snowden, Joseph Gordon-Levitt pledged to donate his entire salary from the film to "help facilitate the conversation" about the relationship between technology and democracy.

Filming

Principal photography began on February 16, 2015 in Munich, Germany. Shooting was underway in Washington, D.C. in early-April. Shooting in Hawaii began on April 15th and lasted until April 18th. The house used to film is on the same street Edward Snowden lived on. At the end of April, Hong Kong press reported that crews started filming in The Mira Hong Kong, followed by outdoor filming in some old buildings in To Kwa Wan. Shooting lasted until mid-May.

Due to fear of interference by the National Security Agency, Stone decided to shoot the film outside of the United States. "We felt like we were at risk here. We didn"?t know what the NSA might do, so we ended up in Munich, which was a beautiful experience," Stone said.

Release

On February 20, 2015, Open Road Films set the film for a December 25, 2015 domestic release. Path would release the film in France on December 30, 2015 and Universum Film would release in Germany on January 7, 2016. However, in September 2015, Open Road moved the film from its Christmas Day release date to 2016. The studio did not give reasons for the delay, however The Hollywood Reporter reported that maybe it was because the film was not finished yet. On October 7, 2015, the film was set for a May 13, 2016 release. On February 19, 2016, the release date was again pushed back to September 16 to qualify as an awards contender.

The film was invited to compete at the 2016 Cannes Film Festival. The festival's director, Thierry Frmaux, saw the film, and praised it, calling it a "really good film. It complements "?Citizenfour"? marvelously. It helps understand a lot of things". Frmaux said he wanted the film to screen at Cannes, but explained that the film's producers "want to aim for the Oscars, so for them a Cannes premiere was a little too early".

Stone held a private screening of Snowden at the former home of Ernest Hemingway in Sun Valley for an invited audience of around two dozen including actress Melissa Leo, who portayed documentary filmmaker Laura Poitras. Guests were required to sign non-disclosure agreements. The film received critical praise from the attendees where one audience member was quoted saying, "What he did that"?s so brilliant is, he gave this kid"?s whole back story, so you really like him."




This webpage uses material from the Wikipedia article "Snowden_%28film%29" and is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. Reality TV World is not responsible for any errors or omissions the Wikipedia article may contain.
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