On August 21st, 2015, the entire world watched in utter horror as news networks around the world reported on an attempted terrorist attack on Thalys train #9364 which was headed for Paris. The attack was prevented by three young Americans traveling through Europe at the time who had been childhood friends that grew up together most of their life.
The film, directed by Clint Eastwood, is unique in the sense that the movie characters are played by the actual real-life heroes from this tragic event. Alek Skarlatos, Spencer Stone, and Anthony Sadler were not only American heroes that saved hundreds of lives, but they were fine young men that Eastwood definitely wanted to meet and consider when planning the script for this movie. When Eastwood asked the three men if they would like to play their own parts in this movie, the offer was too good to say no to.
“We don’t want to ruin our life story…we did have a little debate. But you cannot say ‘no’ to an opportunity like that,” said Skarlatos.
Eastwood knew he was taking a gamble casting three unknown quantities in the Hollywood industry for these roles, but he felt comfortable with his final decision.
“I never looked back. But I did think about, ‘What happens if these guys turn out to be three stiffs?” said Eastwood, “I had a period in my life where I spent more time thinking. But that thinking can get you in a lot of trouble. Sometimes, when you have a good idea, you just have to take it.”
The three men proved to be great characters in their roles, and the film was amped to a whole new level when they were even asked to film it on the actual train that attack happened on. The three of them felt a sense of pride, and catharsis as they filmed the movie, and Eastwood hopes the experience on screen that viewers get will really make people realize just how intense that horrific moment was.
The movie is currently airing at the Lebanon 7, Brownsburg 8, and the AMC theatre at Traders Point.