Would you wait nearly two decades to see your passion project get produced? Screenwriter James Solomon did. And, it was well worth it, he says, to see his period drama The Conspirator finally hit the big screen. “If I were told it was going to take 18 years, but at the end, Robert Redford was going to direct it,” Solomon says, “I would have been fine with that.”
But he didn’t know Redford was going to direct it. Until that happened, Solomon spent the majority of his adult life researching, writing and rewriting the story of Mary Surratt, a Southern woman who stood trial for the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. Solomon got the ideas when he came across a transcript of the trial in 1993. Nearly two decades later, his dream of seeing this story on screen became a reality. The film stars Robin Wright, James McAvoy, Tom Wilkinson and Justin Long. Script sat down with Solomon to discuss writing, waiting and watching the big finale.