Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Seth Rogen join the cast of Aaron Sorkin's The Trial of the Chicago 7. The Oscar-winning Sorkin was already well renowned for his numerous screenwriting credits by the time he made his directorial debut with 2017's Molly's Game. While that film featured all the classic hallmarks of Sorkin dialogue, it also demonstrated a different side of him and suggested he had a promising future as a helmsman. Sorkin didn't take long to line up his next project, signing on to write and direct Trial of the Chicago 7 last fall. The movie is based on the true story of a 1969 trial involving a group of anti-Vietnam protestors.
Sorkin wasted no time recruiting top-notch actors for his latest effort, as Sacha Baron Cohen and Eddie Redmayne were cast in late 2018. Since that time, updates on The Trial of the Chicago 7 have been few and far between, primarily due to Sorkin focusing on his play adaptation of To Kill a Mockingbird. But now, Sorkin is back working on the movie, and he's assembled a star-studded ensemble to bring this true-story tale to life.
According to Deadline, Gordon-Levitt and Rogen are two new additions to the film's cast. The former will play prosecutor Richard Schultz, while the latter is portraying Jerry Rubin - one of the eponymous Chicago 7. They join Cohen (as Abbie Hoffman), Redmayne (as Tom Hayden), Jonathan Majors (as Bobby Seale), and Alex Sharp (as Rennie Davis). There are apparently more roles to be cast, with Michael Keaton being looked at to play lawyer William Kunstler. Production is scheduled to begin in the summer.
For Rogen, this marks his second collaboration with Sorkin, following 2015's Steve Jobs (which Sorkin wrote). Though the actor is best known for his raunchy comedies, he has showcased nice range in a handful of titles, including Steve Jobs and 50/50 (which also co-starred Gordon-Levitt). As such, it'll be interesting to see what he brings to the role of Rubin. Sorkin's used words like "craziest" and "funniest" to describe this story, so Rogen may have an opportunity to tap into his humorous sensibilities. In the case of Gordon-Levitt, Trial of the Chicago 7 will be one of his first major roles since 2016's Snowden, and hopefully it's a meaty one. Over the course of his career, Gordon-Levitt has strung together numerous memorable performances, but is still searching for his first Oscar nomination. Teaming up with a legend like Sorkin may help Gordon-Levitt reach new heights, and he certainly has the skill to handle whatever Sorkin throws his way.
Trial of the Chicago 7 is currently seeking distribution, but given the pedigree of the project, it should only be a matter of time before a studio picks it up. There's no word yet on when the film might premiere, but with shooting commencing this summer, it could theoretically be set for a late 2019 debut in the thick of the next awards season. Though this is a period piece, Trial of the Chicago 7 aims to provide relevant social commentary, which could make it a timely piece of cinema if it's executed properly. Surely, whoever scoops this film up will want to get it out as soon as possible to capitalize on the moment.