News arrives via Deadline that the latest Tom Cruise and Doug Liman (Edge Of Tomorrow) team-up, 1970s set thriller Mena, has been retitled American Made and has shifted from a January release to September 2017.
Of all the movies boasting the word America in the title – and there is a good 270 of them – this one looks closest in spirit to Air America (1990). The true life tale delves into the darker side of US Cold War foreign policy, involves drugs and weapons smuggling, and has a charismatic lead who lands himself in colossal amounts of bother.
Cruise plays Barry Seal, a Trans World Airlines pilot fired for flying explosives to Mexico for a band of anti-Castro guerillas. Unperturbed, he reinvented himself as a drugs smuggler, trafficking cannabis and cocaine between South and North America. Along the way, he came into close contact with cartel figures like Pablo Escobar and Jorge Luis Ochoa Vásquez, as well as the CIA and DEA.
"I love stories of improbable heroes working against the system," explains Liman, "and Barry Seal took the government, and our country, for an unbelievable ride." The Edge Of Tomorrow (2014) director is promising "an entertaining film that is equal parts satire, suspense and comedy – and always surprising."
Gary Spinelli (Stash House) wrote the script based on his spec, with Domhnall Gleeson (Ex Machina), Sarah Wright (21 & Over), Jesse Plemons (The Master), E. Roger Mitchell (The Equalizer) and Jayma Mays (Red Eye) all aboard.