John Krasinski and Drew Barrymore have joined director Ken Kwapis' Whales, a fact-based film about the 1988 rescue of a trio of California gray whales that got trapped under the ice of the Arctic Circle, for Universal Pictures.

According to Deadline, Krasinski will play a small town newspaper reporter who breaks the story. Barrymore plays a Greenpeace activist, and they turn the potential tragedy into an international story. The incident created a temporary Cold War thaw as President Ronald Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev found a common cause. They interceded to save the whales.

Jack Amiel and Michael Begler wrote the script.

Production is tentatively planned for the fall.