Shannon, Clarke Set For McCarthy Biopic
Michael Shannon will play infamous U.S. Republican Senator Joseph McCarthy in the upcoming biopic “McCarthy”. Emilia Clarke, Dane DeHaan and Scoot McNairy are also onboard.
The film will track the demagogue who rose to power during the early days of the Cold War on a wave of anti-communist and anti-socialist hysteria, using show trials and fear-mongering to whip up rampant paranoia about Soviet spies and sympathizers systematically infiltrating every walk of life.
The film will also deal with the man’s enablers including his politically ambitious wife Jean Kerr (Clarke), ruthless young lawyer Roy Cohn (DeHaan) and his trusted friend and colleague Ray Kiermas (McNairy). Finally, it will chart his quite rapid decline in popularity and death from hepatitis in 1957.
In his wake, he left behind the legacy of ‘McCarthyism’ – a term used to this day in popular culture to describe modern-day ‘witch hunts’ and those reckless and power-hungry types who use unsubstantiated accusations, misinformation and targeted smear campaigns in an effort to encroach or squash hard-won civil and political rights and liberties.
Vaclav Marhoul, the director of the controversially and unrelentingly brutal WW2 film “The Painted Bird,” helms the project. Tom O’Connor (“The Hitman’’ Bodyguard”) wrote the original screenplay and produces it with Zach Studin, while former “Star Wars” franchise alum Rick McCallum will executive produce.
Filming will kick off next Fall in Prague and in the United States.