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Jan

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Looks like he's going to be a busy man for a while! And that he's been looking for projects rather than the other way around. I hope this is a portent for the future.

From The Independent:

Bloom to portray diplomat with a difference

By Arifa Akbar, Arts Correspondent

Tuesday, 19 August 2008\

An intrepid Scot, he has been called a modern-day Lawrence of Arabia, renowned for his work as a high-level diplomat and his enlightening travails across conflict regions in which he has lived humbly, wearing native dress among villagers.

So inspirational is the life story of Rory Stewart, an Eton-educated former diplomat, that he is to become the subject of a Hollywood biopic starring the English-born actor Orlando Bloom.

Stewart has earned an international reputation at the relatively tender age of 35 for his work in Iraq, Afghanistan and the Balkans. He has taught Princes William and Harry, run a charity in Kabul, written three books and received an OBE.

After becoming disenchanted by the Allied invasion of Iraq, he left the British diplomatic corps to undertake a two-year journey on foot across 6,000 miles from Turkey to Bangladesh. En route, he was held at gunpoint by Maoist guerrillas, beaten up by the Taliban and imprisoned several times – all of which helped him understand the way communities really live, he says.

The idea for the film came from Bloom after he heard a talk given by Mr Stewart on behalf of his Turquoise Mountain Foundation charity. The project could hail a new direction for Bloom into more politically conscious film-making, after his star billing in such blockbusters as the Pirates of the Caribbean and the Lord of the Rings. Last week, he announced he would co-produce and appear in a film about the siege of Sarajevo. Bloom hopes the film, which is based on the memoirs of the American writer Bill Carter, Fools Rush In, would be made in the Bosnian capital itself.

Mr Stewart, who was born in Hong Kong and studied at Oxford University, was briefly an officer in the Black Watch before joining the Foreign Office, serving as the British representative to Montenegro from 1999 in the wake of the Kosovo campaign, then as the occupying coalition's deputy governor in Southern Iraq in 2003. He was aged just 30.

In Iraq, he grew bewildered by the out-of-touch advice on how to rebuild a devastated society. His 2006 book The Prince of the Marshes: And Other Occupational Hazards of a Year in Iraq gives a bleak but humorous account of the bungled advice that he received.

He plans next year to move to America to take up an academic post as a professor of human rights at Harvard University.

The film, to be written by the award-winning novelist and script writer Ronan Bennett, will focus on three central "chapters" of his life: his epic journey on foot, his return to the Foreign Office, and his aid work in Kabul, which began two years ago as a one-man operation. The Turquoise Mountain Foundation now employs 35 people and runs a artists' school. The charity was conceived by Prince Charles, who enlisted Mr Stewart's help.

He went back to the Foreign Office because of his belief in human intervention, such as in Bosnia and Kosovo. "I arrived [in Iraq] quite hopeful," he said. "It was a long year of disillusionment. I realised that America, Britain and international forces in general lacked the power, legitimacy and knowledge to transform Iraq. I left very doubtful about how much good Britain could do."

From Hong Kong to Hollywood

Name: Rory Stewart

Age: 35

Place of birth: Hong Kong, of Scottish parentage

Education: Eton, and Balliol College, Oxford

Occupation: Former diplomat, award-winning writer, explorer, aid worker and, imminently, a Harvard professor

First career break: Summer tutor to Princes Harry and William in the early 1990s

Greatest accomplishments: British representative to Montenegro during the Kosovo campaign, for which he won plaudits. A 6,000-mile walk from Turkey to Bangladesh, which started in 2000 and took two years

Name: Orlando Bloom

Age: 31

Place of birth: Canterbury, Kent

Education: Gained entry into St Edmund's School, Canterbury, despite his dyslexia, then Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London

First career break: Debut as a rent boy in the 1997 film Wilde, opposite Stephen Fry

Greatest accomplishment: Being cast in a leading role in Peter Jackson's award-winning trilogy The Lord of the Rings (2001, 2002, 2003), followed by a star casting in the Pirates of the Caribbean trilogy, opposite Johnny Depp. In 2006 he guest-starred in the sitcom Extras

More info to follow, I'm sure. :cheer2:

LINKS:

His writings are outlined at Rory Stewart Books.

Turquoise Mountain Foundation, working to rebuild the historic district of Kabul, Afghanistan.

Article from the National Geographic: Can Rory Stewart fix Afghanistan?

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Wow, another really interesting project.

the project could hail a new direction for Bloom into more politically conscious film-making
Fabulous!

Thanks, Jan, for the article and the links. More books to order, I see!

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Here's an interview with Rory Stewart, from Charlie Rose Tomorrow; Charlie Rose is a very well-respected journalist on Public Television in the US, who conducts in-depth interviews with newsmakers.

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Best prices on Stewart's books seems to be at Overstock.com. Sounds like a role Orlando could really get his teeth into.

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What an impressively sane young man Rory Stewart is. No wonder Orlando wants to promote his heroic efforts by making as many people as possible aware of them. Obviously Orlando still has his head on straight and is in full control of the course of his career. My estimation of him, which was always high, just went up again. Way to go Orlando.

Krissy

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Thank-you so much for this news, Jan. :heart: This is just a stunning development and I am so happy for him. And for us. :sheangel:

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This is excellent news. A worthy and eminently worthwhile project. I really like the direction Orlando's career is taking. Thanks, Jan, for bringing this forward. :yahoo:

Barbara

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The idea for the film came from Bloom......The project could hail a new direction for Bloom,... Last week, he announced he would co-produce and appear in a film about the siege of Sarajevo,.. The film, to be written by the award-winning novelist and script writer Ronan Bennett,.

This is amazing.

Absolutely amazing that a man of Orlando's age and status is so involved with bringing awareness to problems in the world around us. Amazing that this beautiful young man is moved enough to strike out on his own to tell these stories. Amazing that so many wonderful, creative and talented people in the industry trust him enough to believe in his vision.

Amazing Mr. Bloom.

I am so proud of him. :wub::quiver::yahoo: (all at the same time)

ETA: Forgot my manners.Thanks, Jan! :hug:

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What a fantastic project! I'm really excited by this one! Makes me think right away of Leonardo DiCaprio in Blood Diamond, what a powerful movie that one was.

I cannot wait for this one to come about!! Thanks as alway Jan for bringing us the lastest breaking Orlando news.

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Thank you for bringing this over Jan. :punk: I feel like Orlando was born to play this role, as both the bringer of important issues to wider attention and the portrayer of Rory Stewart. :cheer2: I'm just a little excited, can you tell? :high5:

:yahoo::iheart:

Aliza

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Wow, another outstanding project. I'm so proud of Orlando for pursuing this type of film. No wonder we adore him. He's one remarkable guy. :iheart:

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This is amazing.

Absolutely amazing that a man of Orlando's age and status is so involved with bringing awareness to problems in the world around us. Amazing that this beautiful young man is moved enough to strike out on his own to tell these stories. Amazing that so many wonderful, creative and talented people in the industry trust him enough to believe in his vision.

Amazing Mr. Bloom.

I am so proud of him. :wub::quiver::yahoo: (all at the same time)

You said it perfectly, Cayenne!

This is fantastic news. Thanks, Jan, for all the info. :hug:

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What an impressively sane young man Rory Stewart is. No wonder Orlando wants to promote his heroic efforts by making as many people as possible aware of them.

Exactly what I thought, Krissy! Thanks for these really interesting news, Jan!

What Rory Stewart said in the interview of bringing help to Afghanistan without being bossy but helping when requested and leaving the leadership to the Afghans is absolutely right! These people are proud and it must be very hard to bear if others decide about their home.

It seems that both Orlando and Rory Stewart are men with a true social conscience and this is a project worthwhile to be brought to more public attention. I very much hope that enough funds and support can be made available to realize this movie.

Another step away from the big Hollywood productions (for the time being). I'm so looking forward to seeing him again on the big screen in his present projects. Go Orlando! :cheer2:

Raven

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I just received email alerts on this one. Even BBC is reporting it.

Orlando Bloom to make a star of Rory

Rory Stewart, the 35-year-old British author who is sometimes billed as a modern-day Lawrence of Arabia, is to have a Hollywood film made about his life. The man behind the movie is Orlando Bloom (pictured), who has already cast himself in the Stewart role, and who got the idea for the biopic after attending a lecture given by the adventurer earlier this year.

No one can deny Stewart’s life to date has been eventful. An Oxford graduate and former diplomat, he has earned an international reputation for his work in Iraq, Afghanistan and the Balkans. He has taught Princes William and Harry (like them, he is an Old Etonian), run a charity in Kabul, written three books and is holder of an OBE. He ended his Foreign Office career (he was an officer in the Black Watch before that) after becoming disenchanted with the Allied invasion of Iraq, the subject of his 2006 book The Prince of the Marshes: And Other Occupational Hazards of a Year in Iraq. He then undertook a two-year journey on foot across 6,000 miles from Turkey to Bangladesh. En route, he was held at gunpoint by Maoist guerrillas, beaten up by the Taliban and imprisoned several times.

The lecture Bloom attended was on behalf of Stewart's Turquoise Mountain Foundation charity, which began two years ago as a one-man operation and now employs 35 people. The charity was conceived by Prince Charles, who personally enlisted Stewart's help.

http://www.thefirstpost.co.uk/people,,orla.r-of-rory,40629

Sounds like a really promising project! I've always wanted too see him star in a biopic and this just seems to fit the bill. That said, I like the direction his career is heading to. :goodluck:

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Another interesting project in hand. He is going to be quite busy. However I imagine this one is only at the preliminary discussion stage at present.

Thanks for the news Jan and Rhyll.

T.

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I'm in awe right now, so I'm a bit speechless. I think every day how amazing he is. He never stops showing me how right I am. What a wonderful man, actor, and human being. :wub:

It looks like Orlando's going to be very busy for awhile. That's at least 3 ongoing projects. I'm glad he got a pretty decent break because it looks like he won't be getting much rest for awhile. :)

Thank you for bringing this to us, Jan. You rock, as always. :high5:

Thanks for your article too, Ryll. I appreciate the update. :wink2:

- Pam -

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This is great news !!

Knowing how Orlando has always promoted social consciousness, this is a project that could only attract him.

And eventually this movie will bring him the recognition that he deserves as a professional actor.

Thumbs up for him !!

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Oh, I am loving this new direction for Orlando! Of course I enjoy his past work and hold many of his films close to my heart, but it looks like we're going to see HIS heart on screen now. Can't wait! Thanks for the news, Jan!

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This is so exciting, first Fools Rush In and now this one! It sounds like another great one for Orlando, something he can really sink his teeth into! :cheer2: I am also not surprised he would want to do something like this. I remember when they asked him during KOH what would he crusade for and he said humanity, well he is definitely doing that with Fools Rush In and now the Life of Rory Stewart. I couldn't be more prouder of him than I am right now. :wub:

So once again, I wish Orlando all the best and I hope this is also another great success for him. I will definitely be there buying a ticket for this one no matter how difficult it will be to watch him act out some of those scenes. :iheart:

Thank you so much Jan and Ryll for bringing these articles over! :hug:

ETA: Rona, I definitely can see the resemblance between Orlando and Rory Stewart, thank you for sharing that picture with us. :hug:

Kim

Edited by Kim

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