Tom Hanks to play hero pilot Chesley Sullenberger for Clint Eastwood

Hanks And Thompson In Saving Mr Banks

Tom Hanks is in final talks to play the pilot who flew his stricken aircraft into the Hudson river, saving all 155 passengers, in Clint Eastwood’s real-life drama Sully.

Variety reports Hanks is considering the role of Captain Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger, who pulled off the miraculous escape on 15 January 2009 after his Airbus A320 had hit a flock of Canada geese during its climb out of nearby LaGuardia airport in Queens, New York. Eastwood signed on to direct earlier this month following the spectacular box-office success of his Iraq war drama, American Sniper, last year. Previous reports suggested the project might be titled Miracle on the Hudson.

Sully will be based on Sullenberger’s New York Times bestselling memoir Highest Duty: My Search for What Really Matters, which has been adapted to the screen by Perfect Stranger writer Todd Komarnicki. Eastwood turned down the chance to direct Jonah Hill in the story of Olympic bomb-plot hero Richard Jewell in order to take on the film. The Oscar-winning film-maker, 85, has his pick of Hollywood projects after American Sniper scored $543m worldwide to become the top-grossing film of 2014 at the US box office on the back of a surge of patriotism.

Sully would mark Hanks’s latest in a series of recent roles playing totemic real-life figures. In 2013 the 58-year-old Oscar-winning star of Philadelphia played heroic merchant mariner Captain Richard Phillips in Captain Phillips, and iconic film-maker Walt Disney in Saving Mr Banks.

Powered by article was written by Ben Child, for on Friday 19th June 2015 08.40 Europe/ © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010