'Revenant' author wrote the book as a Mayer Brown partner

The Revenant

The movie The Revenant is based on a 2002 book written by a lawyer who was a partner at Mayer Brown at the time.

The book author is Michael Punke, who is now deputy U.S. trade representative and U.S. ambassador and permanent representative to the World Trade Organization, the Am Law Daily reports. Punke wrote the book, The Revenant: A Novel of Revenge when he was an international trade partner at Mayer Brown in Washington, D.C.

Punke was in Nairobi working on an international trade agreement on the night of the film’s premiere last week, the Washington Post reports. He was unable to speak with the newspaper because of federal ethics rules that bar him from doing promotional work that could benefit him.

The idea for the historical fictional account of a fur trapper who survived a bear mauling came to Punke while reading a history book on a plane, according to the Post. He wrote in the early morning hours, and then left law practice to teach and write in Montana. He had always longed to return to the west after growing up in Wyoming, his wife, Traci told the Post.

Punke left Montana after getting the “once-in-a-lifetime, can’t-pass-up opportunity” with the World Trade Organization, his wife said.

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