After his breakthrough performances in The Fault in Our Stars, the Divergent series, and this week’s Baby Driver, actor Ansel Elgort next plans to tackle famed American President John F. Kennedy. Elgort will play a younger JFK in Mayday 109, an upcoming film that will explore the future president’s heroic exploits as a Navy captain in World War II.
In addition to starring in the film, Elgort will also serve as a producer, alongside Basil Iwanyk, Beau Flynn, and Emily Gerson Saines.
Mayday 109 was written by Samuel Franco and Evan Kilgore, who also scripted an upcoming film about Anne Frank’s father called Keeper of the Diary, to be directed by Kenneth Branagh.
No director is yet attached to Mayday 109, but with Elgort now signing on to star and produce, it shouldn’t be long before someone steps up.
In April of 1943, Kennedy’s ship, PT 109, was attacked by a Japanese destroyer that cut the ship in half, leaving two crewmen dead.
As captain, Kennedy asked his surviving crewmates whether they wanted to fight or surrender and, when they vowed to survive, hauled an injured crewman to an island three miles away.
Elgort had his film debut in 2013’s remake of Carrie, as the title character’s ill-fated prom date, Tommy Ross (played by William Katt in the original).
It was his performances in two 2014 films with co-star Shailene Woodley that brought him to prominence, though: Divergent and The Fault in Our Stars.
He reprised his Divergent role in two further films in the franchise, The Divergent Series: Insurgent and The Divergent Series: Allegiant.
After the commercial and critical failure of the last film, producers have made the decision to make the final Divergent film a television movie, most likely with a new cast.
Baby Driver, Elgort’s newest film, will debut in theaters tomorrow. Directed by Edgar Wright (Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz), the film tells the story of a young getaway driver who reluctantly works for a crime lord in exchange for a better life. The film has received nearly universal praise from critics, currently scoring a 99% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.