Tom Stern, Clint Eastwood and Steve Campanelli on the set of Gran Torino.  Photo by user Yann de la marne [CC BY-SA 2.0 fr], via Flickr,
Tom Stern, Clint Eastwood and Steve Campanelli on the set of Gran Torino.
Photo by user Yann de la marne [CC BY-SA 2.0 fr], via Flickr,

Clint Eastwood will direct a biopic about Capt. Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger, who became an American hero when he set down a disabled jetliner in the Hudson River, saving the lives of all aboard, Warner Bros. Pictures announced Tuesday.

Filming is scheduled to begin later this year on the as-yet untitled feature film, based on the book “Highest Duty: My Search for What Really Matters,” by Sullenberger and Jeffrey Zaslow.

“Simply put, Clint Eastwood is at the top of his game, not to mention a global treasure. On the heels of his extraordinary work in ‘American Sniper,’ it is tremendously exciting to see him explore the life of another captivating true-life hero,” said Greg Silverman, Warner Bros.’ president, Creative Development and Worldwide Production.

The now-retired US Airways captain made an emergency water landing in the Hudson River off Manhattan after the plane struck a flock of Canadian geese during its initial climb out of LaGuardia Airport on Jan. 15, 2009. All 155 passengers and crew aboard Flight 1549 survived.

Warner Bros. says the film “will go beyond Sullenberger’s almost impossible and much-heralded achievement of safely landing a jumbo jet on the water, which was captured on video and viewed around the world. But behind the scenes, a drama was unfolding that could have cost him his reputation and his wings.”

Sullenberger said he’s “very glad my story is in the hands of gifted storyteller and filmmaker Clint Eastwood, and veteran producers Allyn Stewart and Frank Marshall. The project could not have found a better home than Warner Bros. Pictures. This is truly a dream team.”

— City News Service

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