The Last Movie Stars Docuseries Will Dig Into The Lives Of Paul Newman And Joanne Woodward

Well, fellow classic Hollywood fans, I guess we'll have to sign up for something called CNN+. Ethan Hawke is set to direct a "film in six chapters" that will debut exclusively on the as-yet-launched streamer, and it's all about the lives and love of the late Paul Newman and his wife, Joanne Woodward. The project, titled "The Last Movie Stars," will also be executive produced by Martin Scorsese.

"The Last Movie Stars" sounds like it'll be much more than a simple retrospective. A press release regarding the docuseries calls an unfinished project of Newman's "central" to Hawke's own series. Newman apparently commissioned his friend, screenwriter Stewart Stern, to interview several significant people, including writer Gore Vidal, directors Sidney Pollack and Sidney Lumet, and Newman's ex-wife, Jacqueline Witte. Newman and Woodward also sat with Stern for the project, which Newman apparently planned as a memoir.

The Doc Has An Impressive Roster

Hawke will use archival interview footage, but will also have modern actors voice transcription from interviews for which there is no available footage. He has reportedly recruited a team of actors including Oscar Isaac, George Clooney, Laura Linney, and more to bring the project to life.

"The Last Movie Stars" seems poised to cover much of Newman's and Woodwards' lives together beyond the memoir project. The project's official press release details the richness of the actors' careers and interests, saying:

Woodward and Newman seemed to slip the burdens of searing celebrity and blazed a unique trail. Though their intense romantic relationship was a perennial obsession of fans and Hollywood press, they successfully refocused their fame towards their art, racing, social justice, and human rights, and balanced demanding careers with a fulfilling marriage.

Hawke may seem like an unorthodox choice for the project's director, but the actor-filmmaker was approached by one of Newman and Woodwards' daughters directly. Hawke, who calls this project "more rewarding than I could have imagined," previously directed a biographical documentary about classical pianist Seymour Bernstein, titled "Seymour: An Introduction." In addition to his impressive assembly of voiceover actors, Hawke will also interview modern-day artists about Newman's works and legacy, including Scorsese, Melanie Griffith, and Sally Field.

Though "The Last Movie Stars" is set to debut exclusively on CNN+, it will later be available on HBO Max as well. One question remains, though: assuming "The Last Movie Stars" turns out as great as it sounds, will the so-called six chapter movie be eligible for an Emmy or an Oscar? With the documentary set to debut sometime later this year, we have time to figure that part out.