Tom Hanks is planning a new film about an American folk-rock singer who defected to East Germany in the 1960s. Dean Reed became known as the 'Johnny Cash of Communism' and 'Red Square Elvis' after becoming a major star behind the Iron Curtain.
Reed had a series of hit records and starring roles in communist movies, generally Westerns filmed in the former Yugoslavia.
Recently-released files show that he died in 1986 after committing suicide due to chronic depression. There had been rumours that he was killed by the Stasi after he became disillusioned with Communism and planned to return to America.
Unveiling his plans for the film, Hanks said: "This will be no black-and-white story of the virtuous West and the evil empire of Communism." Hanks said he would star in and produce the film, but that no date has yet been set to start filming.