This version of the asylum-seeking CIA leaker's story is based on the novel Time of the Octopus, by Snowden's Russian lawyer Anatoly Kucherena. The story tracks the American whistle blower as he heads to Russia, and the conversations between him and his lawyer as he awaits his request for asylum to be considered by the country. Oliver Stone and producing partner Moritz Borman also have the righs to Luke Harding's novel The Snowden Files: The Inside Story Of The World's Most Wanted Man, which will serve as a secondary basis for the movie.
The Snowden Files will begin shooting this December in Munich, Germany.
Joseph Gordon-Levitt recently wrapped production on the Philippe Petit biopic The Walk, for director Robert Zemeckis, which follows the tightrope walker's daring Twin Towers stunt. Joseph Gordon-Levitt will next shoot Xmas with Seth Rogen and Anthony Mackie.
Edward Snowden is considered a polarizing figure in American politics, called brave by some and a traitor by others. He made public a record number of classified documents, more than anyone since Daniel Ellsberg released The Pentagon Papers during the Vietnam War.
While there are other Edward Snowden films in the works at various studios, Oliver Stone is expected to get The Snowden Files to the big screen first. Sony has No Place to Hide in development, based on Pulitzer-winning journalist Glenn Greenwald's upcoming book No Place To Hide: Edward Snowden, The NSA, And The U.S. Surveillance State. Producers of the James Bond franchise Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli are bringing this version to the big screen.