Deadline has reported that Warner Bros. is planning on an adaptation of Nathan Philbrick’s upcoming non-fiction book Bunker Hill: A City, A Siege, A Revolution. The most interesting aspect of the report is that Oscar-winner Ben Affleck is in early talks to direct and will have Argo screenwriter Chris Terrio write the screenplay. Here is the official plot synopsis of the book:
Boston in 1775 is an island city occupied by British troops after a series of incendiary incidents by patriots who range from sober citizens to thuggish vigilantes. After the Boston Tea Party, British and American soldiers and Massachusetts residents have warily maneuvered around each other until April 19, when violence finally erupts at Lexington and Concord. In June, however, with the city cut off from supplies by a British blockade and Patriot militia poised in siege, skirmishes give way to outright war in the Battle of Bunker Hill. It would be the bloodiest battle of the Revolution to come, and the point of no return for the rebellious colonists. Philbrick brings a fresh perspective to every aspect of the story. He finds new characters, and new facets to familiar ones. The real work of choreographing rebellion falls to a thirty-three year old physician named Joseph Warren who emerges as the on-the-ground leader of the Patriot cause and is fated to die at Bunker Hill.
Others in the cast include Paul Revere, Warren’s fiancé the poet Mercy Scollay, a newly recruited George Washington, the reluctant British combatant General Thomas Gage and his more bellicose successor William Howe, who leads the three charges at Bunker Hill and presides over the claustrophobic cauldron of a city under siege as both sides play a nervy game of brinkmanship for control.With passion and insight, Philbrick reconstructs the revolutionary landscape-geographic and ideological-in a mesmerizing narrative of the robust, messy, blisteringly real origins of America.
Ben Affleck has already proven that he is immensely talented. Bunker Hill is a promising project that would allow Affleck the opportunity to show off his directorial skills. As promising as this project is, nothing is set in stone. Even if Affleck signs on to direct, this won’t be his next film. He is currently set to write and direct an adaptation of Dennis Lehane’s crime novel Live By Night and plans to reunite with Matt Damon for a Whitey Bulger biopic. It’s uncertain at this point whether Warner Bros. will wait to produce Bunker Hill until Affleck’s schedule opens or if they will search for another director to take the helm.
Nathan Philbrick’s novel is going to be released in stores next month.