Bryan Cranston Plays Blacklisted Screenwriter in Trumbo Trailer

Posted on August 16, 2015

Bryan Cranston stars in the first trailer for Trumbo which was just released. Cranston plays outspoken screenwriter, author and anti-war activist Dalton Trumbo. He was one of Hollywood's greatest screenwriters, but when he refused to testify in front of the House Un-American Activities Committee during the McCarthy era, he was blacklisted in Hollywood.

Trumbo's career was on fire when he got called in front of Congress for allegedly promoting Communist ideas in his films. After he was blacklisted, he was still in demand by studios -- so he wrote under a pseudonym. He won two Oscars during the time he blacklisted: one for Roman Holiday which starred Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck, and one for The Brave One. He wrote the screenplays for many popular and critically acclaimed films, including The Sandpiper which starred Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton, Spartacus which starred Kirk Russell, Papillon which starred Dustin Hoffman and The Way We Were which starred Barbara Streisand and Robert Redford.

Trumbo believed his political beliefs were no one's business and refused to comply with Senator McCarthy's orders to reveal the names of all writers who had joined or attended a meeting of the Communist party. That decision had a devastating effect on his career. No one knew Trumbo had written Spartacus -- or dozens of other movies -- until Kirk Douglas publicly announced the fact. The shocking revelation helped end the blacklist. The Writers Guild readmitted Trumbo and gave him back his credits.

The film was directed by Jay Roach from a screenplay by John McNamara. McNamara adapted the script from a book by Bruce Cook. The supporting cast is pretty amazing: Helen Mirren, Louis C.K., Diane Lane, Elle Fanning, John Goodman and Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje co-star. The film is set for release on November 6th. Take a look:

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