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Eddie Redmayne in Talks to Star in Aaron Sorkin’s ‘Trial of the Chicago 7’ (EXCLUSIVE)

“Fantastic Beasts” actor Eddie Redmayne is in early talks to star in Amblin Entertainment’s “The Trial of the Chicago 7,” sources tell Variety.

Aaron Sorkin is writing and directing, and Sacha Baron Cohen is also in talks to join. Marc Platt is producing the pic.

Following his directorial debut, 2017’s “Molly’s Game,” Steven Spielberg saw Sorkin as the perfect candidate to take over directing duties on “Chicago 7.”

The film is based on the infamous 1969 trial of seven defendants charged by the federal government with conspiracy and more, arising from the countercultural protests in Chicago at the 1968 Democratic National Convention. The trial transfixed the nation and sparked a conversation about mayhem intended to undermine the U.S. government.

Redmayne will play Tom Hayden, the co-founder of the Students for a Democratic Society, who was best known for his role as an anti-war, civil rights, and radical intellectual activist in the 1960s, authoring the Port Huron Statement and eventually standing trial in the Chicago Seven case.

An A-list ensemble had always been a goal for the movie, with talent like Will Smith being considered during the time of the project’s first brush with development. This time around, Sorkin is also looking for big talent.

Set to reenter the world of “Harry Potter” as Newt Scamander in “Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald,” Redmayne sought something on the prestige level as his next project, as the actor has always struck a balance in the roles he pursues. Prior to being cast in “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them,” he won an Oscar for playing theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking in Focus’ “The Theory of Everything.”

“Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald” bows on Nov. 16. Redmayne recently filmed the Amazon Studios movie “The Aeronauts,” which reteams him with his “Theory of Everything” co-star Felicity Jones.

He is repped by CAA, United Agents, and Jackoway Tyerman Wertheimer Austen Mandelbaum Morris & Klein.

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