Coen Brothers to Script WWII Story ‘Unbroken’ for Angelina Jolie

Louis Zamperini has an amazing life story. He ran in the Berlin Olympics of 1936 where he shook Adolf Hitler’s hand because the leader wanted to meet him. He then fought in WWII, flying with  a B-24 bomber in the Pacific Islands before a mechanical failure brought his plane and the 11 men in it down. Only three men survived, Zamperini included, and they ate raw fish and drank captured rain water for 47 days while fighting off shark attacks before washing ashore in the Marshall Islands where they were taken as POWs by the Japanese. Zamperini was torture by one of the 40 most wanted war criminals of the time but survived for two years before finally seeing his release at the end of the war.

Oh, and he’s still alive. He’s 96 and, clearly, he cannot be killed.

Universal has tried to bring his story to the screen for a while, and after an attempt with Francis Lawrence, the studio turned to Angelina Jolie to direct late last year. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the new director has found the writers she wants for the rewrite of the material: the Coen Brothers.

It’s fitting that it’s called Unbroken, and this development makes it that much more exciting. Zamperini deserves stellar storytellers for his life, and it now looks like this project will give that to him (and to us). Hopefully the studio gives it the green light.


A veteran of writing about movies for nearly a decade, Scott Beggs has been the Managing Editor of Film School Rejects since 2009. Despite speculation, he is not actually Walter Mathau's grandson. See? He can't even spell his name right.

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