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The uplifting story of 100-year-old British hero Captain Tom Moore, who kept a nation in lockdown inspired, is being turned into a feature film, fast-tracked for production in 2021.
The U.K.’s Fred Films and Powder Keg Pictures won a bidding war for the life rights to the former British Army captain and World War II hero, who raised £38.9 million ($49.4 million) for the U.K.’s National Health Service by walking laps around his garden in the run-up to his 100th birthday during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Moore’s original aim was to raise £1000 ($1,272) by walking 100 laps around his garden with the aid of his walker. He also recorded a hit single, “You’ll Never Walk Alone,” that hit No. 1 on the U.K. charts. In the process, he broke two Guinness World Records — for the oldest person to achieve a U.K. No. 1 track, displacing Tom Jones, and also for raising the most money on an individual charity walk. He was knighted by the Queen in a private ceremony at Windsor Castle.
“I don’t know of any 100-year-old actors, but I’m sure Michael Caine or Anthony Hopkins could do a wonderful job if they were prepared to age up!” Moore said.
Fred’s James Spring, and Powder Keg’s Nick Moorcroft and Meg Leonard will produce the film. Moorcroft and Leonard are also writing the original screenplay.
Fred and Powder Keg previously collaborated on the hit U.K. films “Finding Your Feet” (2017), starring Imelda Staunton, Celia Imrie and Timothy Spall, and “Fisherman’s Friends” (2019), with James Purefoy and Noel Clarke. Their next, “Blithe Spirit,” toplined by Dan Stevens, Leslie Mann, Isla Fisher and Judi Dench, will be released theatrically by Studiocanal U.K. during the Christmas holiday.
“This is a story about the power of the human spirit and Captain Sir Tom personifies that,” Moorcroft and Leonard said in a statement. “We are honoured to be telling this unique and inspiring story and are excited about audiences getting to know the man behind the headlines.”
Spring added: “At a time of fear and uncertainty, 161 countries around the world embraced the beacon of hope that Captain Sir Tom provided. We are privileged that Tom and his family have entrusted us to tell their story.”