Oliver Stone Working On Edward Snowden Film

Whistleblower in the wind

Oliver Stone Working On Edward Snowden Film

by James White |
Published on


Whenever there’s a big news event, particularly one involving a stew of theories, controversy and a clash of ideologies, we like to imagine that Oliver Stone receives a call on a flashing red phone, much like Batman in the ‘60s TV show. It’s clearly been ringing off the hook thanks to the Edward Snowden revelations, and Stone is indeed now adapting Guardian journalist Luke Harding’s account of the ever-developing story in **The Snowden Files.

Pitched as a thriller, Stone’s film will chart the experiences of Snowden, the whistleblowing National Security Agency contractor who began leaking classified documents to former Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald in June 2013. "This is one of the greatest stories of our time," Stone, says in a statement. "A real challenge. I'm glad to have the Guardian working with us."

Snowden, currently stuck in Russia after the US cancelled his passport, has become a polarizing figure between those – such as the director himself – who consider him a patriotic hero, and those who feel he’s a traitor. Naturally, there’s already a competing film out there in development, with Bond producers Michael Wilson and Barbara Broccoli working on No Place To Hide, itself adapted from Greenwald’s book on the matter. Stone should be starting work on his account before the year is out.

It's certainly intriguing to imagine what the man who made JFK and **World Trade Center **could do with a meaty tale like this. But there’s one other issue to consider: the popularity of any eventual film. As The Fifth Estate proved last year, if the result isn’t a satisfying film, all the buzz-worthy subject matter in the world won’t help you avoid a flop. Let's hope for better luck this time.

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