The film is based on the true story of screenwriter Dalton Trumbo (Cranston), who had been one of Hollywood’s top screenwriters before he was forced to testify in front of the House Un-American Activities Committee in 1947. When he refused to cooperate, he was sent to prison for 11 months.
In the trailer, Cranston plays Trumbo as a chain smoker with ample reservoirs of sarcasm and resourcefulness. “Many questions can be answered yes or no only by a moron or a slave,” he tells the committee.
In response to being blacklisted, Trumbo turned to ghost-writing scripts and was publicly credited in 1960 with “Exodus,” followed by “Spartacus.” “If we get one big movie, we can get all the big movies,” Cranston notes in the trailer.
Helen Mirren co-stars as Trumbo’s nemesis, columnist Hedda Hopper. Elle Fanning, Diane Lane, John Goodman, Michael Stuhlbarg and Louis C.K. co-star in the pic, directed by Jay Roach.
Michael London’s Groundswell Prods. produces in association with Shivani Rawat, Monica Levinson and Nimitt Mankad through ShivHans Pictures along with Janice Williams, Kevin Kelly Brown and John McNamara (who wrote the screenplay).
Bleecker Street, headed by Andrew Karpen, launched last summer and took on distribution of the ShivHans titles.
Trumbo won an Oscar for “The Brave One” under the name Robert Rich. In 1993, he was posthumously awarded the Oscar for writing “Roman Holiday.”