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Kevin Bacon, Nat Geo Channel Developing Miniseries ‘In Harm’s Way’ (EXCLUSIVE)

Kevin Bacon is on board to star in a miniseries for National Geographic Channel, producer Mark Gordon and ABC Signature Studios revolving around the sinking of the U.S.S. Indianapolis at the end of World War II.

The project is in the early stages of development. Paul Scheuring (“Prison Break” ) is writing the script adapted from the 2001 novel “In Harm’s Way: The Sinking of the U.S.S. Indianapolis and the Extraordinary Story of its Survivors” by Doug Stanton.

Scheuring and Bacon will exec produce with Gordon and Nick Pepper of Mark Gordon Co. and David Schiff.

“In Harm’s Way” tells the story of the Navy cruiser that was sunk in the Pacific by Japanese submarines in July 1945 after delivering uranium and other components for an atomic bomb to a U.S. base near the Philippines. The 900-plus survivors, many of them injured, spent five days struggling to survive on life rafts, battling shark attacks and exposure to the elements. Only 317 survived by the time rescuers arrived.

Gordon previously optioned Stanton’s book in 2001 with an eye toward developing it as a feature with Barry Levinson directing.

Nicolas Cage just finished lensing an indie film on the same subject, “U.S.S. Indianapolis: Men of Courage,” for Hannibal Pictures and Saban Films. Robert Downey Jr.’s Team Downey has been developing a story related to the Indianapolis as a feature at Warner Bros.

The harrowing story has also been the subject of numerous documentaries and the 1991 CBS TV movie starring Stacy Keach, “Mission of the Shark: The Saga of the U.S.S. Indianapolis.”

Bacon can be seen in “Black Mass” and starred in the summer release “Cop Car.” He’s also coming off a three-season run in the Fox thriller “The Following.” He’s repped by WME, MGMT Entertainment and Gaines Solomon Law Group.

Scheuring is with CAA and Sloane, Offer, Weber & Dern.

The Gordon Co. recently cut a deal with Entertainment One to establish a mini film and TV studio, although “Harm’s Way” is a project that originated under Gordon’s previous deal at ABC. Gordon Co. is the home of Showtime’s “Ray Donovan,” CBS’ “Criminal Minds” and ABC’s new drama “Quantico.”

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