News: Steven Spielberg & Leonardo DiCaprio In Talks On Ulysses S. Grant Biopic

Steven Spielberg and Leonardo DiCaprio are in early talks to re-team on what is described as an epic biopic of Ulysses S. Grant. First reported by Deadline, Spielberg wants to direct DiCaprio in what would be their first collaboration since the 2002 drama Catch Me If You Can.

DiCaprio and Appian Way partner Jeniffer Davisson are producing at Lionsgate. They acquired the movie rights to Grant last November, which is the bestselling biography written by Ron Chernow. The book is being adapted by David James Kelly, who recently wrote the upcoming film Robin Hood starring Taron Edgerton.

The major issue may be scheduling. Spielberg looks to have Indiana Jones and West Side Story set as his next two films. DiCaprio's next film is Quentin Tarantino's Once Upon A Time In Hollywood, following a sabbatical after filming the Oscar-winning performance in The Revenant

DiCaprio and Davisson are developing several starring vehicles for the actor, including the Leonardo Da Vinci project that is based on the Walter Isaacson book. Paramount acquired the rights to the film in a seven figure deal with Appian Way. There is also have a Teddy Roosevelt film from Paramount and Appian Way. Scott Bloom is currently working on the script, with Martin Scorsese tapped to direct. Another possible collaboration with Scorsese is on the David Grann book Killers of the Flower Moon.

The Grant film is reportedly the highest priority. The book was written by Pulitzer Prize winning author Chernow, whose book Washington: A Life served as the inspiration for Lin-Manuel Miranda’s musical Hamilton. Spielberg previously explored the Civil War in the Oscar-nominated film Lincoln. Grant was a complicated individual whose life had many highs and lows, from his early military resignation for accusations of drunkenness to becoming Commanding General of the Army during the Civil War and and then President of the United States from 1869-1897.