For those of you who’ve wondered whether Jon Stewart would be as adept in a director’s seat as he is in that of a faux-news anchor, your wait is (almost) finally over, following the announcement of a November 7th release date for Rosewater, Stewart’s feature film directorial debut. As you may recall, in 2013 Stewart stepped out from behind his anchor’s desk for the summer to film Rosewater, leaving the Daily Show in the hands of (then-pre Last Week Tonight host) John Oliver.
Rosewater is the true story of BBC journalist Maziar Bahari, played by Mexican actor Gael Garcia Bernal, and is based on his 2011 memoirs Then They Came For Me.
As Deadline reports:
In June 2009, [Bahari] returned to Iran to interview Mir-Hossein Moussavi, who was the prime challenger to controversial incumbent president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. As Moussavi’s supporters rose up to protest Ahmadinejad’s victory declaration hours before the polls closed on election day, Bahari endured great personal risk by submitting camera footage of the unfolding street riots to the BBC. Bahari was soon arrested by Revolutionary Guard police, led by a man identifying himself only as “Rosewater,” who proceeded to torture and interrogate the journalist over the next 118 days. Iranian authorities released Bahari on $300,000 bail and the promise he would act as a spy for the government.
While this is the first time Stewart has been behind the camera as a director, this isn’t his first time engaging with Bahari’s story. Here’s Bahari in a 2011 interview with Stewart on The Daily Show.