If you find yourself wanting to draw parallels between today’s political unrest and the tumultuous late ‘60s, Aaron Sorkin is here with a gigantic sketch pad and 1 million sharpened pencils. The West Wing creator is set to direct The Trial of the Chicago 7, which, according to a casting announcement released Friday, stars both your favorite Oscar winners and most beloved comedic actors. The film, based on Sorkin’s screenplay, follows the infamous 1969 trial of a group of counterculture protesters charged with conspiracy and inciting a riot following the 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago.
For starters, Eddie Redmayne will reportedly play anti-war activist (and onetime husband to Jane Fonda) Tom Hayden, while Sacha Baron Cohen has been cast as Youth International Party co-founder Abbie Hoffman, with Seth Rogen as fellow founding YIP member Jerry Rubin. To The Bone actor Alex Sharp helps round out the cast as fellow activist Rennie Davis.
Over on the prosecution’s side, Joseph Gordon-Levitt will portray attorney Richard Schultz. The Chicago 7 were initially known as the Chicago 8 until Black Panther co-founder Bobby Seale’s trial was separated from that of his fellow defendants. Seale will be played by Jonathan Majors, star of the upcoming HBO series Lovecraft Country. [Source]