One of the most prolific screenwriters working today, Aaron Sorkin is a six-time Emmy nominee for his writing on Sports Night and The West Wing (winning for the episode “In Excelsis Deo” in season 1) and he’s been nominated 14 times by the Writers Guild of America, winning twice. His screenplay adaptation for 2010’s The Social Network won him the Golden Globe, Writers Guild, BAFTA and the Oscar.
While The Trial of the Chicago 7 is based on the events before, during and after the protests and police violence at the 1968 Democratic Convention in Chicago, Sorkin has said that it’s still “shockingly, chillingly relevant” to today and the climate of protests for equality and political and social unrest in 2020 with the Black Lives Matter movement protesting the killing of Black people by police in the United States.
Interview: Yahya Abdul-Mateen II on the legacy and responsibility of playing Bobby Seale in ‘The Trial of the Chicago 7’ [VIDEO]
The genesis of the film began nearly 15 years ago with Steven Spielberg, who was originally going to make the film and wanted Sorkin to write it. Sorkin loved the idea but the film disappeared in development. The spark of interest came back a few years ago and Sorkin began pouring himself over the 21,000 page trial transcript to find his story, his angle. He had already made his mark early as a writer with the play and screenplay of A Few Good Men, a film by which most trial-based dramas are still judged by.
Interview: Frank Langella on playing Judge Hoffman and working with the ensemble of ‘The Trial of the Chicago 7’ [VIDEO]
AwardsWatch writer Dewey Singleton sat down for an interview with Sorkin to chat briefly about the creation of his film, why Donald Trump was “the straw that broke the camel’s back” and being bolstered by such a strong cast.
The Trial of the Chicago 7 is currently available to stream exclusively on Netflix.
Photo credit: Niko Tavernise/Netflix