Matt Damon has been cast to play Robert F. Kennedy in a biopic about the late politician. Deadline reports that the film will be based on the Evan Thomas biography His Life. Gary Ross (Seabiscuit) will direct from a screenplay by Steven Knight (Eastern Promises). The biopic will span Kennedy’s ascent from his brother’s shadow to a powerful nation figure before being assassinated during his 1968 campaign for President.
This may finally be Damon’s shot at a long-deserved Oscar. Obviously, I haven’t read the script and a million things can happen between now and the finished film, but on paper, you have a respected, talented, and bankable actor playing a larger-than-life American icon. The Academy becomes filled with tiny orgasms over that kind of project. While Damon was nominated this year for Best Supporting Actor for his portrayal of South African rugby star Francois Pienaar in Clint Eastwood’s Invictus, that doesn’t even begin to compare to playing Robert F. Kennedy. Damon is the goods and RFK’s story is worth telling so it falls to Ross and Knight to live up to the potential of this project.
Damon is currently set to star in Contagion for Steven Soderbergh, True Grit for the Coen Brothers, Hereafter for Clint Eastwood, and will next be seen in Paul Greengrass’ Green Zone, which hits theaters on March 12th.