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‘Game Change’ Director Jay Roach Returning to HBO With Khrushchev Movie ‘K Blows Top’

'Game Change' Director Jay Roach Returning to HBO With Khrushchev Movie 'K Blows Top'

“Game Change,” the Sarah Palin election film that attracted a lot of attention for both its portrayal of its subject and an eerie central performance from star Julianne Moore, worked well for HBO. So well, in fact, that the network will once again work with director Jay Roach, who helmed both “Game Change” and the 2008 Bush/Gore original film “Recount.”

Roach’s new HBO project, “K Blows Top,” will be another political-themed movie, this one set a little further back in the past. According to the Hollywood Reporter, the film will be set in September of 1959, when Nikita Khrushchev (to be played by Paul Giamatti) visited and toured the U.S. for almost two weeks as part of the Cold War “thaw.”

Paul Bernbaum (“Hollywoodland”) wrote the screenplay, which is adapted from Peter Carlson’s 2009 book of the same name. Reviewing the book in the Washington Post, Jacob Heilbrunn wrote:

In September 1959, Soviet premier Nikita Khrushchev gave a speech before Hollywood’s biggest stars at the Café de Paris, Twentieth Century Fox’s elegant commissary. Forty-five minutes into his talk, as celebrities like Marilyn Monroe (wearing, on orders from her studio bosses, her slinkiest dress) and Frank Sinatra watched in amazement, a red-faced Khrushchev began to punch the air. He wasn’t complaining about American nuclear plans or Cuba but an even graver matter: his American guides’ refusal to allow him to visit Disneyland. (The problem was security, they said.)

Roach also has a lighter political-themed film due in theaters this summer — the Will Ferrell/Zach Galifianakis comedy “The Campaign.”

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