Actor to play Gen. MacArthur in political thriller

Tommy Lee Jones will portray Gen. Douglas MacArthur opposite Matthew Fox in Peter Webber’s Japan-set political thriller “Emperor,” a co-production of Fellers Film and Krasnoff/Foster Entertainment.

Producers announced Jones’ casting Tuesday. “Tommy will bring strength, intelligence and gravitas to the portrayal of Gen. Douglas MacArthur, a legendary American hero,” producer Gary Foster said.

Lensing is set to begin later this month in locations including New Zealand and Japan. CAA is handling sales inside the U.S.

Inspired by true events, “Emperor” is a story of love and understanding set amid the uncertainties of the days following the Japanese surrender at the end of WWII, when MacArthur, as supreme commander of the occupying forces, served as de facto ruler of Japan.

Fox will play Gen. Bonner Fellers, one of MacArthur’s Japan experts, who is charged with reaching a decision on an issue of historical importance: Should Emperor Hirohito be tried and hanged as a war criminal? Pic also will explore the story of Fellers’ love affair with a Japanese exchange student and his quest to find her in the ravaged post-war landscape.

Webber (“The Girl With a Pearl Earring”) will direct from a script by David Klass and Vera Blasi. Yoko Narahashi (“The Last Samurai”) and Eugene Nomura will produce with Gary Foster (“Ghost Rider”) and Russ Krasnoff (“The Soloist”).

Jones is represented by CAA and lawyer Bill Jacobson, while Fox is represented by Management 360, WME and lawyer Craig Jacobson.

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