The movie, starring Hugh Jackman as the 1988
Democratic presidential contender, follows the brief period from
Hart's announcement of his candidacy to the suspension of his
campaign following a media frenzy over allegations of an
extramarital affair with Donna Rice.
Hart, who met with Jackman during the film shoot, denied the
Former political correspondent Matt Bai, who wrote the book "All
the Truth is Out" on which the film is based, said the public
seems to care less about sexual scandals in politics than it did
at the time.
But the movie looks at questions the media and the public still
wrestle with, he noted.
"Do we assume that everybody's lying and everybody's fraudulent
and it's our job to find out how?" Bai told a news conference on
Saturday in Toronto, where the film is playing at the city's
"Or do we endeavor to provide the context that the character
requires, what they've been their whole lives, their whole
career?" he added. "We hope to leave asking each other and
arguing about what it is that matters."
"This is a deeply human movie," said Jay Carson, one of the
screenwriters. "The people who are involved in politics are
human beings trying to make difficult decisions every single
day. There are no black hats or white hats in our story. There's
a lot of gray."
The movie, directed by Jason Reitman, also hones in on the women
affected by the scandal: Rice, played by Sara Paxton; his wife
Lee Hart, portrayed by Vera Farmiga; and Molly Ephraim's Irene
Kelley, a young scheduler in Hart's campaign.
"'The Front Runner' is a movie that's also very interested in
the emotional burden that's put on women during a scandal,"
"Whether that's Donna Rice, a young, bright aspirational woman
who had her life stolen from her ... or whether you're the one
young woman working at the Washington Post or one young woman
working on a campaign, and are forced to speak for your entire
The film will be released in select theaters on Nov. 6, the day
of the U.S. midterm congressional elections.
(Reporting by Nichola Saminather; Editing by Jill Serjeant and
[© 2018 Thomson Reuters. All rights
Copyright 2018 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published,
broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Thompson Reuters is solely responsible for this content.