Columbia Pictures has acquired the life rights of captain Richard Phillips, just weeks after his dramatic attempted escape and eventual rescue from armed Somali pirates.
According to Variety, the studio has also optioned the film rights to Phillips' upcoming memoir, and will bring to the bigscreen the story of the cargo ship captain's capture by four Somali pirates and subsequent rescue by the U.S. Navy.
Michael DeLuca, Kevin Spacey, Dana Brunetti and Scott Rudin are onboard to produce. Brunetti, a former member of the Coast Guard, was particularly instrumental in helping land the rights. He flew to the East Coast to meet with Phillips to discuss how the film would be handled.
The film will retell the events that garnered headlines worldwide in April. After his ship was hijacked on the high seas, Phillips surrendered himself to the pirates in order to protect his crew. The married father of two made one unsuccessful escape attempt before an elite squad of Navy SEAL snipers shot and killed three of the four pirates - an action authorized by President Obama. A fourth pirate surrendered and is in custody.
No production date has been set.