The Boys In The Boat: George Clooney To Direct Joel Edgerton In Olympics Drama

An inspiring Olympic story turned bestselling novel is finally coming to the big screen. The feature film adaptation of "The Boys in the Boat," directed by George Clooney, has announced an ensemble cast headlined by actor Joel Edgerton (per Deadline)

"The Boys in the Boat" is a true story about the 1936 Berlin Olympics that made the New York Times' bestseller list after its 2013 release. The book by Daniel James Brown follows an American rowing team from the University of Washington that beat the odds to find themselves at the Olympics. It also dives deep into the backstory of this particular Olympic games, whose opening ceremonies prominently featured Adolf Hitler just three years before World War II.

The Clooney adaptation of "The Boys in the Boat" has reportedly added several cast members to production. Jack Mulhern, who played despicable punk teen Dylan in "Mare of Easttown," has joined the cast alongside "Chernobyl" actor Sam Strike. Callum Turner, who plays Theseus Scamander in the "Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them" franchise, was previously announced as a cast member. The film looks to have cast nearly its entire rowing crew, with Deadline reporting that Luke Slattery, Tom Varey, Thomas Elms, Wil Coban, Bruce Herbelin-Earle, and Hadley Robinson will round out the cast.

Clooney's Latest Historical Adaptation

For years, the rights to "The Boys in the Boat" were reportedly gathering dust on The Weinstein Company's shelves after a version directed by Kenneth Branagh never manifested. Eventually, Lantern Entertainment decided to partner with MGM and Clooney's company, Smokehouse Pictures, to make this adaptation happen.

This isn't the first adaptation Clooney has directed, nor is it the first film to tell a specific historical story related to Nazi Germany. In 2014, the filmmaker directed "The Monuments Men," a story about a group of people recovering artworks that would have been destroyed during World War II, based upon the 2007 book of the same name. Clooney most recently stepped behind the camera for "The Tender Bar," a coming-of-age film based upon the memoir by J.R. Moehringer.

Despite its highly specific setting, "The Boys in the Boat" is actually a somewhat sprawling story, as it traces the rowing team's members from their working-class, Depression-era upbringing all the way to the Olympic podium. It's a sports story, a political story, and a historical drama all in one. There's no word yet on the film's release date, though the project is expected to enter production later this month.