Truth, a US political drama starring Cate Blanchett and Robert Redford, will start shooting in Sydney in early October.

Redford will play former CBS News anchor Dan Rather with Blanchett as his producer Mary Mapes in the film which will mark the directing debut of screenwriter James Vanderbilt, whose credits include the first two instalments of The Amazing Spider-Man, White House Down and Zodiac.

The plot follows the scandal that ensued after Rather reported on 60 Minutes in 2004 that George W. Bush’s father arranged for him to serve in the National Guard to avoid the Vietnam War draft.

Subsequently CBS launched an investigation into whether the documents quoted in the story were forgeries and Mapes was fired for so-called lapses in judgment.

Rather left CBS News in 2006 and then sued CBS, parent company Viacom and senior management for making him a “scapegoat” in the story. The suit was dismissed by a New York state appeals court.

Vanderbilt is adapting Mapes’ 2005 memoir Truth and Duty: The Press, The President, and the Privilege of Power.

As IF reported, Blanchett’s wanted to make the film, set in Washington and New York, in Australia so she could be close to her family.

Producer Antonia Barnard (co-producer of Michael Petroni’s Backtrack, Tracks and A Few Best Men) has boarded the project, working with William Sherak and Brad Fischer, Vanderbilt’s partner in Mythology Entertainment.  Sherak and Vanderbilt arrived in Sydney this week.

Casting is underway in Sydney for the supporting roles.

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