Joseph Gordon-Levitt in talks to play whistleblower Edward Snowden

Oliver Stone to direct real life political drama

Joseph Gordon-Levitt has agreed to take on the role of whistleblower Edward Snowden in Oliver Stone’s real life political thriller.

Snowden, a former intelligence analyst, released thousands of classified documents in the biggest breach of the security of American secrets since Daniel Ellsberg’s leaking of the Pentagon Papers during the Vietnam War.

Variety reports, The JFK director has acquired the rights to the book ‘Time of the Octopus’ by Snowden’s lawyer Anatoly Kucherena. The film, to be titled The Snowden Files looks as if it will also be based on the book ‘The Snowden Files’ by Guardian journalist Luke Harding.

Snowden leaked the classified documents to the press in June 2013. He is on the run having been granted temporary asylum in Russia. He faces a potential 30-year prison sentence if he returns to the US. Production on the film is scheduled to begin early next year ahead of a 2016 release date.

Gordon-Levitt also stars in another true-life tale as high-wire walker Phillipe Petit in Robert Zemeckis’ The Walk. The film is based on the story of Petit’s daring and illegal high-altitude quest to walk between the twin towers of New York’s World Trade Center in 1974.

The subject of the Oscar-winning documentary Man On Wire, the film’s producer Tom Rothman has described The Walk as Gravity meets Ocean’s Eleven.

A press release for his new film reveals “innovative photorealistic techniques and IMAX 3D wizardry” will bring Petit’s adventure to life promising “a chance for moviegoers to viscerally experience the feeling of reaching the clouds”.

The Walk is scheduled for release October 2, 2015.