Tom Hanks is more of a producer than an actor these days, so when he attached himself to a project you know it has got to be worth his time. Just looking at his upcoming on-screen slate, there's Oscar bait all around, from his own directorial effort Larry Crowne to Kathryn Bigelow's Hurt Locker follow-up Triple Frontier to Stephen Daldry's Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close. Keeping in line with that kind of quality, the two-time Oscar winner has just signed up to play Capt. Richard Phillips, the helmsman of the cargo ship Maersk Alabama who gave himself up as a hostage to Somali pirates to keep his crew from having to leave the ship with them.
The prestigious producing team of Scott Rudin, Michael De Luca, Dana Brunetti and Kevin Spacey (The Social Network) will shepherd Sony Pictures adaptation of "A Captain's Duty: Somali Pirates, Navy SEALs, and Dangerous Days at Sea", Phillips' memoir of the harrowing ordeal. Billy Ray (Breach, upcoming The Hunger Games) provided the screenplay for the film, which will now likely search for a director.
He's not the best physical match for Phillips, but I can see Hanks playing the stoic sea-man, especially after revisiting this classic photo.