Philip Anschutz’s Bristol Bay Prods. will finance and co-produce a feature based on the WWII saga of Desmond T. Doss, an Army medic who won the Congressional Medal of Honor despite refusing to carry weapons.
Doss project will be produced by Bill Mechanic and David Permut, who have developed it for several years, and Terry Benedict. Steve Longi will co-produce, Gregory Crosby will associate produce, and Bristol Bay exec VP Lenny Kornberg will oversee the project.
Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Robert Schenkkan, who penned “The Quiet American,” has been hired to write the screenplay.
Doss, a Seventh Day Adventist, was assigned “conscientious objector” status on religious grounds after being drafted and was ostracized by fellow soldiers for his pacifist stance. During the battle of Okinawa, Doss saved 75 men under enemy fire on a 400-foot-high cliff and subsequently became the only conscientious objector ever to win the Congressional Medal of Honor.
A producer on “Ray” and “Sahara,” Bristol Bay is part of Anschutz Film Group along with Walden Media, which co-financed and produced “The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe” with Disney.
Mechanic and his Pandemonium shingle are producers on Paramount’s “Torso” and on the animated pic “Coraline.” Permut and his Permut Presentation are producing teen comedy “Youth in Revolt” for Dimension and “Brother Sam” at Universal.