Issue 2: What’s New? (8 June)

No time to keep up-to-date? No problem. Every issue, RSL rounds-up relevant goings-on in the world of fact-based cinema, such as trailers, films in the works, new releases to look out for, and relevant events/training. We start with a look at an epic chess battle…

One to watch!

Pawn Sacrifice stars Tobey Maguire as American chess legend Bobby Fischer. It tells of his Cold War-era battle with Soviet Grandmaster Boris Spassky (Liev Schreiber) during the 1972 World Chess Championship.

It’s directed by Edward Zwick (Glory) and written by Steven Knight, with a story co-credited to Christopher Wilkinson and Stephen J. Rivele, who have previously worked on such fact-based films as Ali and Nixon.

Pawn Sacrifice is due out in the US on 18 September 2015, following its premiere at the 2014 Toronto Film Festival. Meanwhile, take a look at the trailer:


More trailers…

Check out the first trailer for Suffragette, which stars Meryl Streep and Carey Mulligan. It tells of Britain’s journey toward granting women the right to vote. Written by Iron Lady‘s Abi Morgan and directed by Sarah Gavron, Suffragette opens the 59th BFI London Film Festival on 7 October.


Based on the true story of a doomed 1996 expedition, Everest stars Jake Gyllenhaal and Josh Brolin as part of a team caught up in a brutal blizzard on the mega-mountain. Directed by Baltasar Kormákur, Everest has been adapted by Mark Medoff and Slumdog Millionaire’s Simon Beaufoy. Based on Jon Krakauer’s bestseller, Into Thin Air, it’s due out in the US on 18 September (a week later in the UK), in 2D, 3D and IMAX. Whoa…



In the works: The true story of Seretse Khama, a member of the royal family of the south African nation that became Botswana, who sparked outrage when he married a white woman in 1948. Written by Guy Hibbert, A United Kingdom is tipped to star David Oyelowo and Rosamund Pike. At the helm is Belle director, Amma Asante. Read more about it here.

In the news: Proving that timeliness isn’t always a virtue, United Passions (released in the US on 5 June) fictionalises the early days of FIFA, the world soccer body which was recently in the headlines over allegations of corruption and the resignation of long-running (and recently re-elected) president, Sepp Blatter (played by Tim Roth). The film was commissioned and largely funded by FIFA, so don’t expect an objective and cynical piece of cinema. Indeed, you can read The Hollywood Reporter‘s rather scathing review here.

Quick hit: Keep an eye out for Life, which stars Dane DeHaan as James Dean and Robert Pattinson as Life magazine photographer, Dennis Stock. Directed by Anton Corbijn (Control), it’s due out in the UK on 25 September 2015.

Quick hit: Imagine being the only person in your village not to share in a lottery jackpot. Variety reports a movie telling of that very scenario is currently in the works. It’s based on a New York Times article by Suzanne Daley.

Out to rent/buy…

Kajaki: Set in 2006, this tells the true story of a small unit of soldiers in Afghanistan’s Helmand Province forced to undertake a dramatic rescue mission when attempts to disable a Taliban roadblock go wrong. It was written by Tom Williams and directed by Paul Katis.

Explore more: You can find an interesting article comparing the US and UK approaches to putting soldiers on screen here. And don’t forget to check out our analysis of American Sniper. Both films are now out on DVD.

Out on the big screen…

Danny Collins: Out in the US back in March (and available on DVD on 30 June), this has just reached UK screens. Al Pacino stars as an ageing 1970s rocker who leaves his hedonistic lifestyle behind when he discovers a 40-year-old letter written to him by John Lennon. It’s inspired by folk singer, Steve Tilston, and written/directed by Dan Fogelman.

Shooting for Socrates: Back to soccer for this loose retelling of Northern Ireland’s journey to the 1986 World Cup finals in Mexico. It was written/directed by James Erskine and features John Hannah as the team’s manager. The film hits UK screens on 12 June.

Events and training…

How to Write Based on a True Story (online), Screenwriters’ University, 2 July-13 August 2015 (details here)

If you’ve got any news/events etc. you’d like us to include in future issues, drop us a line at:

You can also find us on Twitter (@reelscreenlife) where we’ll be posting between-issue updates of relevant news and other goings-on.

(Image: “A stack of newspapers” by Daniel R. Blume)