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Emilia Jones and Susanna Fogel Team Up for Reality Winner Biopic

Emilia Jones and Susanna Fogel are reuniting. The pair just teamed up for “Cat Person,” a film adaptation of Kristen Roupenian’s viral New Yorker story about a college sophomore’s relationship with an older man. That project is currently in post-production, and now they’re lining up another collaboration: Jones, who led this year’s Best Picture winner, “CODA,” will topline “Winner,” Fogel’s “darkly comedic” biopic of whistleblower Reality Winner. Deadline broke the news. 

Penned by Kerry Howley and based on her New York Magazine feature story, the film follows Winner (Jones), “a brilliant young misfit from Texas who finds her morals challenged while serving in the U.S. Air Force and working as an NSA contractor. The film will offer a fresh take on the traditional whistleblower thriller; the coming-of-age story follows an idealistic young woman persecuted for standing by her principles,” the source details.

Connie Britton, whose recent credits include “The White Lotus” and “Luckiest Girl Alive,” will play Winner’s mother.

Winner received a history-making sentence after leaking a document exposing Russia’s interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

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“As a filmmaker, I strive to tell stories that interrogate the world we live in and the systems that are broken in it. But in a fun way. Reality Winner is the perfect heroine for a film that meditates on ideas of personal power, morality, and finding your voice,” Fogel said. “She’s a true individual: she speaks many languages, she loves her guns, she could destroy you on Twitter, and her obsession with Pikachu is unmatched. Clearly, she’s the perfect mouthpiece for a generation of people who are unique and fed up with feeling powerless. And there is no one more perfect to play her than Emilia Jones, one of the most exciting young actresses working today. I hope Reality’s story will inspire others to speak up and defend their beliefs, whatever the cost. I’m thrilled to partner with this team of artists and activists to bring this movie to life.”

Fogel’s feature credits include “The Spy Who Dumped Me” and “Life Partners.” “The Flight Attendant” and “The Wilds” are among her small screen credits. She received an Emmy nod for the former. Fogel directed multiple episodes of “A Small Light,” an upcoming Disney+ limited series that tells the story of a Dutch woman who risked her life to help protect Anne Frank’s family. “The Morning Show’s” Bel Powley stars.

Jones played an aspiring singer and the only hearing member in a Deaf family in “CODA,” Siân Heder’s Oscar-winning coming-of-age pic. Her other credits include “Locke & Key” and “Nuclear.”