George Clooney has signed on to direct the media scandal film, Hack Attack, based on the book Hack Attack: The Inside Story of How the Truth Caught Up With Rupert Murdoch. The 2011 British phone hacking scandal involved Murdoch’s News Corp subsidiary, News International, and led to the shutdown of the 168-year-old paper, News of the World. Over a dozen people were arrested in connection with the scandal, including the publication’s former executive editor, Neil Wallis. The book was written by Nick Davies, the reporter who broke the story exposing News International’s practice of hacking voicemails of celebrities and other high-profile individuals, as well as ordinary citizens.
In a statement about Hack Attack, quoted by NEWSMAX, Clooney said, “This has all the elements—lying, corruption, blackmail—at the highest levels of government by the biggest newspaper in London. And the fact that it’s true is the best part. Nick is a brave and stubborn reporter, and we consider it an honor to put his book to film.”
The film is being produced by the media conglomerate Sony Pictures Entertainment, a competitor of Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox. Sony’s Michael De Luca recently commented on the plans for Clooney, the son of a journalist, to direct the picture, pointing out the interest the actor/filmmaker has in “the role journalism plays in all of our lives.”
The project is expected to start filming next year.