LOS ANGELES, CA – Principal photography has begun on the WikiLeaks drama â€œThe Fifth Estate,â€ it was announced today by DreamWorks Studios. The film about the controversial website stars Benedict Cumberbatch as Julian Assange and Daniel BrÃ¼hl as Daniel Domscheit-Berg, as well as Laura Linney, Anthony Mackie, David Thewlis, Peter Capaldi, Dan Stevens, Alicia Vikander and Carice van Houten.
â€œThe Fifth Estateâ€ will open in U.S. theaters on November 15, 2013 and be distributed domestically by Disneyâ€™s Touchstone label. Distribution internationally will be split among Disney, DreamWorks partner Reliance, and deals made through the studioâ€™s partnership with Mister Smith Entertainment.
Following Daniel Domscheit-Berg (BrÃ¼hl), an early supporter and eventual colleague of Julian Assange (Cumberbatch), â€œThe Fifth Estateâ€ traces the heady, early days of WikiLeaks, culminating in the release of a series of controversial and history changing information leaks. The websiteâ€™s overnight success brought instant fame to its principal architects and transformed the flow of information to news media and the world at large.
Joining DreamWorks as a co-financier on â€œThe Fifth Estateâ€ is Participant Media. This will be the fifth collaboration between the two companies who previously partnered on Steven Spielbergâ€™s â€œLincoln,â€ the 2011 Academy Award-winning smash â€œThe Help,â€ â€œThe Kite Runnerâ€ and â€œThe Soloist.â€ With a focus on real issues that shape our lives, Participant creates social action and advocacy programs to transform the impact of the media experience into individual and community action. Some of their other films include â€œAn Inconvenient Truth,â€ â€œGood Night, and Good Luck,â€ â€œFood, Inc.,â€ â€œCharlie Wilsonâ€™s War,â€ â€œWaiting for â€˜’Superman,â€™â€ â€œThe Best Exotic Marigold Hotelâ€ and the current Academy Award nominee for Best Foreign Language Film, â€œNo.â€
Bill Condon (â€œKinsey,â€ â€œDreamgirls,â€ “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn”) will direct â€œThe Fifth Estateâ€ from a screenplay by Josh Singer (TVâ€™s â€œFringe,â€ â€œThe West Wingâ€), based on â€œInside WikiLeaks: My Time with Julian Assange at the Worldâ€™s Most Dangerous Websiteâ€ by Daniel Domscheit-Berg and â€œWikiLeaks: Inside Julian Assangeâ€™s War on Secrecyâ€ by David Leigh and Luke Harding. The producers are Steve Golin and Michael Sugar, with Participantâ€™s Jeff Skoll and Jonathan King joining Richard Sharkey as executive producers. â€œThe Fifth Estateâ€ is a coproduction between Afterworks and FBO, with Hilde De Laere co-producing for FBO. The film is supported by the Belgian Tax Shelter for Audiovisual Production.
Said director Bill Condon, â€œIt may be decades before we understand the full impact of WikiLeaks and how it’s revolutionized the spread of information. So this film won’t claim any long view authority on its subject, or attempt any final judgment. We want to explore the complexities and challenges of transparency in the information age and, we hope, enliven and enrich the conversations WikiLeaks has already provoked.â€
“The Fifth Estate” is set to open in theaters on November 15, 2013.