Eastwood making film about Paris-bound train attack, using actual Airman, Soldier, and civilian as actors

Much in the vein of Audie Murphy’s biographical film, legendary hardman Clint Eastwood is making sure three Americans get their story told right- by having them play themselves.

Clint Eastwood has tapped three Americans -Spencer Stone, Alex Skalatos and Anthony Sadler- to play themselves as they re-enact the takedown of an armed terrorist on a Paris-bound train in The 15:17 to Paris.

15:17 will tell the story of an American soldier, airman and civilian who happened to be in the right place and right time when an Islamic terrorist decided to orchestrate an attack on a train armed with a pistol, assault rifle, box cutter and a bottle of gasoline.

Initially confronted by a young Frenchman and a US-French dual-citizen, the terrorist -identified as Ayoub El Khazzani- plowed through several individuals and attempted to fire his rifle.

With his rifle malfunctioning, the gunman was attacked by then-Airman First Class Stone, Specialist Skarlatos and their civilian friend, Anthony Sadler.

Stone put El Khazzani in a chokehold, getting sliced up by a box cutter in the process and almost losing his thumb. Seizing the assailant’s rifle, Skarlatos repeatedly struck the assailant in the head with the AKM until he was subdued.

Following the neutralization of the suspect, Stone provided aid to the dual citizen, who had been shot in the neck, jamming his fingers into the wound and pressing on the man’s artery.

When coming up with casting ideas for 15:17, Eastwood and his studio reportedly began a wide-ranging had actors selected for the role before they -in a last-minute decision- decided that Sadler, Skarlatos and Stone should portray themselves.

According to Variety, this isn’t unusual for Eastwood to have almost-unknown cast members- Gran Torino featured individuals who were either new to or relatively unknown in the acting world.

Sources claim the film will lead up to the three’s exploits from an expose of their childhood friendship, ultimately opening the door for the roles they will play personally.

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  • Andy Wolf

    Andy Wolf is an Appalachian native who spent much of his youth and young adulthood overseas in search of combat, riches, and adventure- accruing decades of experience in military, corporate, first responder, journalistic and advisory roles. He resides in North Carolina's Blue Ridge Mountains with his K9 companion, Kiki.

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