Gary Oldman to star as Citizen Kane screenwriter in new biopic

The British actor will portray Herman Mankiewicz, who began his career as a news reporter.

Gary Oldman is teaming with filmmaker David Fincher on a new biopic about the screenwriter behind movie classic Citizen Kane.

The Darkest Hour actor will portray Herman Mankiewicz in Mank, which will chronicle his rise to fame, first as a news reporter and critic in New York City, before moving to Hollywood to begin a career in the film industry.

Among Mankiewicz's credits include The Wizard of Oz, The Pride of the Yankees, and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, but it was 1941's Citizen Kane that cemented his legacy.

However, his relationship with director and co-writer Orson Welles became strained after Mankiewicz accused the filmmaker of trying to take sole credit for the script, which won them the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay.

The biopic has been a passion project for Fincher for the past two decades, after initially trying to get the film into production following the release of 1997's The Game.

It has also been of particular interest for the director as his father, Howard 'Jack' Fincher, wrote the original script for the movie prior to his death in 2003.

Mank will also be shot in black-and-white and will premiere on streaming service Netflix. Fincher will produce alongside partner Cean Chaffin and Oldman's longtime collaborator Douglas Urbanski, who played Harvard president Larry Summers in Fincher's 2010 movie, The Social Network.

The 61-year-old Brit will next be seen in Steven Soderbergh's Panama Papers drama The Laundromat, alongside Meryl Streep and Antonio Banderas. The award-winning actor has also just finished filming Joe Wright's The Woman in the Window, which will be released in 2020.

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