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Universal’s “News of the World,” a historical drama starring Tom Hanks, will hit theaters just in time for awards season on Dec. 25, 2020.

Paul Greengrass is directing the film, reuniting with Hanks for the first time since 2013’s “Captain Phillips.”

“News of the World” is based on the best-selling novel by Paulette Jiles and set in the days following the Civil War. It charts the unlikely friendship between Captain Jefferson Kyle Kidd, an earlier precursor to today’s newscasters, and the 10-year-old girl he is tasked with bringing to her relatives. As they travel hundreds of miles into the unforgiving wilderness, the two will face tremendous challenges of both human and natural forces.

The movie was previously in development at Fox 2000. However, Disney decided to retire the label this year as part of its purchase of the 20th Century Fox film studio, opting to go ahead only with projects that were already in production.

Greengrass wrote the screenplay with Luke Davies (“Lion”) delivering an earlier draft for “News of the World.” Hanks and Gary Goetzman will produce the film through their Playtone banner with Gail Mutrux through Pretty Pictures, along with Gregory Goodman. Steven Shareshian and Tore Schmidt are executive producing.

Up next, Hanks is starring as Fred Rogers in “It’s a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood,” a biopic about the beloved children’s television host. Greengrass has directed multiple movies for Universal including “Green Zone,” “The Bourne Supremacy,” “The Bourne Ultimatum,” “Jason Bourne” and “United 93,” for which he received a best director Oscar nomination.

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