Ben Affleck in talks to lead George Clooney’s The Tender Bar
After seeing the Oscar-winning director enter talks with Amazon Studios to helm the film in July, George Clooney is ready to direct the adaptation of The Tender Bar and is already eyeing an A-list cast as Ben Affleck (The Way Back) has begun talks to star in the project, according to Deadline.
Sources report that the two-time Oscar-winning filmmakers have been wanting to work together for years now, never quite finding the right project to collaborate on, but when Clooney elected to direct the film as his next project, he put the Argo director/star at the top of his list.
Based on the J.R. Moehringer memoir of the same name, the story centers on an eight-year-old boy growing up in Long Island who seeks out his father at a local bar, only to instead build bonds with patrons at the bar that he looks up to as father figures and tries to find a way to move forward in his life and accept the love of his single mother.
The script for the film is written by William Monahan, best-known for his Oscar-winning work on the Martin Scorsese-helmed ensemble crime thriller The Departed, as well as Body of Lies and Edge of Darkness. The film adaptation was originally set at Sony with Theodore Melfi (Hidden Figures) attached to direct, but after he departed the project the studio put it into turnaround with Amazon acquiring the rights shortly after.
Clooney was set to follow up Midnight Sky, in which he stars and produces, with MGM’s adaptation of Boys in the Boat, but sources report that with the complexity of shooting the Olympics sports drama in the midst of a pandemic, he has chosen Tender Bar as his next project though is still attached to Boys. It’s currently unclear if Clooney will also star in Tender Bar, but given his appearance in all but one of the films he’s directed in the past 18 years, be it supporting or starring role, chances are high he’ll find a role to take on.
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