Bacon, HBO in Game of 'Chance'

EntertainmentMoviesTelevisionDeathKevin BaconFilm FestivalsDrama (genre)

HBO has tapped Kevin Bacon to star in a film called "Taking Chance," about a Marine colonel who served as the military escort for the body of a young soldier killed in Iraq three years ago.

The movie, based on a short story by Lt. Col. Michael Strobl, will tell the story of Strobl's journey with the body of Lance Cpl. Chance Phelps, to Phelps' hometown in Wyoming after he was killed in action on April 9, 2004. More than a thousand people attended the funeral -- more than population of Dubois, Wyo., where Phelps grew up.

"When I first read 'Taking Chance' it reminded me of a modern-day 'The Best Years of Our Lives,'" HBO Films president Colin Callender says. "Here is a Desert Storm vet writing about his own experiences on escort duty with an honesty and dignity that jumped off the page. I cannot imagine anyone better than Kevin Bacon to bring this role to the screen."

Strobl, who retired from the Marine Corps earlier this year after serving for 24 years, co-wrote the film's script with Ross Katz, who will also direct. Katz has earned Oscar nominations as a producer of "In the Bedroom" and "Lost in Translation" and an Emmy nod as an exec producer of HBO's "The Laramie Project," but "Taking Chance" will be his first turn as a director.

Filming is scheduled to begin in the summer for a premiere sometime next year.

Bacon's recent credits include "Mystic River," "Where the Truth Lies" and "The Woodsman." He has two movies due in theaters later this year, the action flick "Death Sentence" and an independent drama called "Rails & Ties."

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