Sony Pictures Entertainment announced yesterday that it has purchased the movie rights to former NSA contractor Edward Snowden's story. Snowden is currently hiding out in Russia for fear of being prosecuted for leaking classified NSA documents related to the agency's vast surveillance operations around the world. The movie will apparently be based on the award-winning national security journalist Glenn Greenwald's book "No Place to Hide: Edward Snowden, the NSA, and the U.S. Surveillance State."
The story will be produced by Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli, best known for their work on the James Bond movies Skyfall and Quantum of Solace. It has been making its rounds through Hollywood for some time, but several studios passed because of the perceived difficulties with Snowden’s situation and story.
Greenwald’s book tells the story of his first-hand experience last year when he took a covert and risky trip to Hong Kong to meet the National Security Agency whistleblower. After this trip, Greenwald and filmmaker/investigative journalist Laura Poitras published a series of stories disclosing a treasure trove of secret government documents leaked by Snowden, and exposing the massive extent of covert US surveillance.
The book also details how Greenwald and Poitras came to meet with Snowden and the fallout from their reporting, much of which has been credited with sparking a global conversation about surveillance. Terms of the movie deal were not disclosed.