Aug 29, 2007

Stone recruits Willis for My Lai massacre film

NEW YORK (Hollywood Reporter) - Oliver Stone is fighting the Vietnam war again, this time recruiting Bruce Willis to star in a film revolving around the infamous My Lai massacre.

Image Caption: Bruce Willis arrives for the premiere of the film 'Live Free or Die Hard' in New York, June 22, 2007. Oliver Stone is fighting the Vietnam war again, this time recruiting Willis to star in a film revolving around the infamous My Lai massacre.

Willis will play William R. Peers, the real-life Army general who investigated the murder of about 350-500 people -- mostly women, children and the elderly -- by U.S. soldiers.

Channing Tatum ("Step Up") will portray Hugh Thompson Jr., an Army helicopter pilot who helped stop the killing by flying between the attackers and the My Lai villagers, rescued survivors and later testified against the soldiers.

Michael Pena is in talks to play Capt. Ernest Medina, the tough commanding officer of the troops responsible for the massacre who was charged in the crimes but ultimately found not guilty. Pena appeared in Stone's last film, "World Trade Center."

United Artists is in talks to finance the $40 million project, set for production next year. In the screenplay by Mikko Alanne, the audience pieces together the truth as Peers finds his way through the event's cover-up.

Stone recently had been exploring a feature about the U.S. government's hunt for Osama bin Laden in Afghanistan, but chose "Pinkville" (a military description for the My Lai region) after talks with UA principals Tom Cruise and Paula Wagner.

Vietnam is familiar turf for real-life veteran Stone. He covered the region in his Oscar-winning "Platoon," "Born on the Fourth of July" and "Heaven and Earth."

Reuters/Hollywood Reporter

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