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Ripped from the headlines: 5 best journalism movies

Robert Downey Jr. and Jake Gyllenhaal in a still from 'Zodiac.' PARAMOUNT PICTURES.

The Rob Ford story could be coming to a screen near you – but it’s the reporter behind the story who is making headlines.

Toronto Star reporter Robyn Doolittle wrote the book (literally) on the Ford family and the movie rights to her heavily-hyped account Crazy Town: The Rob Ford Story were officially sold on Monday.

Here’s a look back at other recent movies featuring journalists, reporters and the story behind the story.

Our list looks at movies made solely after 2000, which means classics like Network (1976) and Citizen Kane (1971) were left out. What did we miss? Let us know in the comments.

Zodiac (2007)

The David Fincher thriller is ostensibly the story of the infamous Zodiac killer, who terrorized northern California in the late 1960s. But it’s also a testament to the dogged reporting of  Paul Avery (played by Robert Downey, Jr.) and political cartoonist Robert Graysmith (played by Jake Gyllenhaal).

Both worked for the San Francisco Chronicle at the time of the crimes and eventually tracked down the man they believe is responsible. Graysmith later turned to writing true crime novels but his greatest mystery remains unsolved: the Zodiac killer was never caught.

Capote (2005)

The late Philip Seymour Hoffman plays Truman Capote as he struggles to write In Cold Blood, considered one of the best — and first — pieces of literary journalism.

The book details the murder of a family of four — two children survived — but the movie examines Capote’s attempt to uncover what happened inside the Clutter family home.

He relies heavily on jailhouse interviews with convicted killer Perry Smith, eventually gaining his trust. His warm relationship with police officers and their wives, used to gain information about the case, is also on display.

The book was published in 1965, the year Smith was hanged for the crimes.

Good Night, and Good Luck. (2005)

George Clooney’s multi-hyphenate performance — he wrote, directed and starred in the movie — examines Sen. Joe McCarthy and his feud with broadcast journalist Edward R. Murrow.

Murrow (played by David Strathairn) takes a very public stance against McCarthy’s anti-Communist witch hunts, leading to a very public battle.

The movie’s title comes from Murrow’s signature sign-off, “good night, and good luck.”

Today, the Radio Television Digital News Association hands out awards named after Murrow, for excellence in reporting.

Frost/Nixon (2008)

Based on the 2006 play of the same name, the tense drama recreates interviews between British television broadcaster David Frost (played by Michael Sheen) and former United States President Richard Nixon (Frank Langella).

The interviews take place after Nixon has resigned in the wake of the Watergate scandal.

Two men sitting in a room has never been more compelling.

Anchorman (2004)

The movie that launched Will Ferrell’s post-Saturday Night Live career, Anchorman is a less solemn (but not totally inaccurate) take on broadcast journalism.

Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy follows a breaking-news team in the 1970s, coping with the integration of a female anchor.

The movie also spawned a sequel, 2013’s Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues, and thousands of quotes your co-workers are still repeating.