Fresh off spectacular reviews for his Sundance film "The Spectacular Now," James Ponsoldt is attached to direct "Rodham," an indie movie about Hillary Clinton's early years, TheWrap has learned.
Written by up-and-coming screenwriter Young Il Kim, "Rodham" placed fourth on the 2012 Black List. Set during the height of the Watergate scandal, the story follows rising star Hillary Rodham, the youngest lawyer chosen for the House Judiciary Committee to Impeach Nixon, who finds herself forced to choose between a destined path to the White House and her unresolved feelings for former boyfriend Bill Clinton, who is teaching law in Arkansas.
Wyck Godfrey and Marty Bowen are producing for Temple Hill Entertainment ("The Twilight Saga") along with Richard Arlook of the Arlook Group. Isaac Klausner is overseeing the project for Temple Hill.
Those familiar with "Rodham" tell TheWrap that producers plan to attach an actress to the project before shopping it to studios and independent financiers.
While the media often decries the lack of strong female roles for Hollywood's young actresses, industry executives who have read the script claim it offers a potentially award-worthy role for one lucky ingenue. Several top actresses have expressed interest in the project, though insiders stressed that the project is still in the early stages of development.
South Korean screenwriter Kim previously described the film to Politico as the "journey of a woman who was torn between her personal desires and her professional ambition — both literally pulled her thousands of miles apart, because Bill did not want to leave Arkansas, and she did not want to leave Washington, D.C."
Ponsoldt has had good luck unearthing gems from the Black List, which catalogs Hollywood's best unproduced screenplays. He most recently directed Scott Neustadter and Michael Weber's 2009 Black List screenplay "The Spectacular Now," which drew rave reviews at Sundance and will be released this summer by upstart A24 Films.
Ponsoldt previously directed the critically acclaimed alcoholism drama "Smashed" and recently signed on to write a feature adaptation of the musical "Pippin" for the Weinstein Company, which also hired him to adapt "Forgive Me, Leonard Peacock," the upcoming novel from "Silver Linings Playbook" author Matthew Quick.
Ponsoldt is represented by UTA and Brillstein Entertainment Partners.