Tim Van Patten, director of HBO series such as Game of Thrones, Boardwalk Empire, The Wire, Deadwood, Rome and The Sopranos is in talks to direct a Coast Guard drama for Disney called The Finest Hours. The movie is based on the book written by Casey Sherman and Michael Tougias, and adapted by The Fighter screenwriters Paul Tamasy and Eric Johnson.
The Finest Hours is based on the unbelievable true story about a daring 1952 Coast Guard rescue of 84 men off Cape Cod after two oil tankers collided and were torn in half by waves during a fierce blizzard.
This film would be Van Patten's first feature film, but with the incredible shows he's worked on, I have a feeling he'll do a great job bringing this story to life if he ends up officially landing the job. This is really an amazing story, and I have no doubt it will end up being an incredible film. Just reading the book description below got me very excited about this project!
Here's a full detailed description of the story from the book:
In the winter of 1952, New England was battered by the most brutal nor'easter in years. As the weather wreaked havoc on land, the freezing Atlantic became a wind-whipped zone of peril.
In the early hours of Monday, February 18, while the storm raged, two oil tankers, the Pendleton and the Fort Mercer, found themselves in the same horrifying predicament. Built with "dirty steel," and not prepared to withstand such ferocious seas, both tankers split in two, leaving the dozens of men on board utterly at the Atlantic's mercy.
The Finest Hours is the gripping, true story of the valiant attempt to rescue the souls huddling inside the broken halves of the two ships. Coast Guard cutters raced to the aid of those on the Fort Mercer, and when it became apparent that the halves of the Pendleton were in danger of capsizing, the Guard sent out two thirty-six-foot lifeboats as well. These wooden boats, manned by only four seamen, were dwarfed by the enormous seventy-foot seas. As the tiny rescue vessels set out from the coast of Cape Cod, the men aboard were all fully aware that they were embarking on what could easily become a suicide mission.
The spellbinding tale is overflowing with breathtaking scenes that sear themselves into the mind's eye, as boats capsize, bows and sterns crash into one another, and men hurl themselves into the raging sea in their terrifying battle for survival.
Not all of the eighty-four men caught at sea in the midst of that brutal storm survived, but considering the odds, it's a miracle -- and a testament to their bravery -- that any came home to tell their tales at all.
Michael J. Tougias and Casey Sherman have seamlessly woven together their extensive research and firsthand interviews to create an unforgettable tale of heroism, triumph, and tragedy, one that truly tells of the Coast Guard's finest hours.
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