Tommy Lee Jones to Direct and Star in Hemingway Film

Posted on May 21, 2008

Tommy Lee Jones will adapt, direct, produce and star in a movie based on Ernest Hemingway's posthumously published novel Islands in the Stream reports Reuters. Morgan Freeman and John Goodman may also join Jones in the film project.

"Islands" centers on the various life stages of a reclusive male painter named Thomas Hudson before, during and after World War II, after he moves to the Bahamas. Like many Hemingway characters, Hudson, who in the tale has a stint working for the U.S. Navy and also endures a series of family tragedies, leads a complicated emotional life that he hides behind a stony exterior.

The book was published in 1970, nine years after Hemingway killed himself. He actually broke off a piece of the novel and turned it into a novella that became 1952's "The Old Man and the Sea." Jones co-wrote the script with Bill Witliff ("The Perfect Storm"). The project will be presented to buyers at Cannes on Sunday.

The Hemingway adaptation marks Jones' sophomore directorial effort, after the Mexican mystery "The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada."

The movie will have a $30 million budget. Production is scheduled to begin next March in Puerto Rico. There was a 1977 film based on Hemingway's Islands. It starred George C. Scott and was directed by Franklin J. Schaffner.

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