A few years ago reports started cropping up about Somali pirates attacking transport ships off the coast of Africa. It became a bit of a joke in the media because, well, no one takes pirates seriously in the 21st century. The hijacking of the Maersk Alabama, an unarmed cargo ship destined for Kenya, changed that. It was the first time an American ship had been seized by pirates in nearly 200 years. The media and the U.S. Navy certainly took Somali pirates seriously after that.
Written by Billy Ray (Breach) and directed by Paul Greengrass (United 93), Captain Phillips is the story of that ship and what happened aboard it over the course of four very long days in 2009. Tom Hanks stars as the titular captain, an ordinary man thrust into an extraordinary situation-- the type that seems so incredible it was just destined to become a movie. We obviously don't know how closely Greengrass' film sticks to the real events, but it is adapted from Phillips' own book A Captain's Duty, so we're guessing it's fairly accurate. Plus, considering the real event involved gun fights, knife fights, hostage negotiations, boat chases and Navy SEAL snipers, there really isn't much reason to even script a bunch of fictitious action.
The newly released, international trailer looks pretty gripping and has that intimate, fly-on-the-wall style that Greengrass has made so intense time and time again over the years. It's been a while since we've seen Hanks in survival mode, so it'll be nice to see him flex those chops again. Check it out and mark your calendars for October 11, 2013.