With financing apparently now up in the air for Chinese epic The Great Wall, it appears Ed Zwick is searching for a project to fill time until it's ready to go. He’s locked on to one of the most well-regarded unmade scripts floating around Hollywood. Zwick is setting up to make Pawn Sacrifice with Tobey Maguire in the lead.
Steven Knight’s script focuses on chess prodigy Bobby Fischer, who captured the imagination of America with his fast rise to grandmaster status in the game and, most famously, by defeating Russia’s Boris Spassky in a World Championship face-off in 1972.
Touched by genius, Fischer also suffered real issues and in later life began making increasingly anti-American and anti-Semitic statements. After legal issues in Japan, he ended up living in Iceland until his death in 2008.
David Fincher has long wanted to make the movie, becoming one of many who have praised the screenplay. Now Zwick is taking over with Maguire starring and producing.
It’s just the latest gig for Maguire, who signed yesterday to lead a version of Z For Zachariah. He’s recently finished work on Jason Reitman’s Labor Day and will be seen next summer in The Great Gatsby.