Oscar-nominated writer Jason Hall has been tapped to write and direct “Unstoppable” for 101 Studios and Dwayne Johnson and Dany Garcia’s Seven Bucks Productions.
The true-life inspirational sports flick will follow Anthony Robles who, despite being born with one leg to a single-parent family on the wrong side of the tracks, overcame every obstacle to become an undefeated collegiate wrestling star, three-time All-American, 2011 NCAA National Champion, two-time ESPY Award winner and a National Wrestling Hall of Fame inductee.
The latest draft of the script was written by John Hindman, based on Robles’ memoir “Unstoppable: From Underdog to Undefeated: How I Became a Champion,” published in 2012 by Penguin imprint Gotham Books.
“I grew up wrestling, and I remember tuning into the 2011 NCAA wrestling finals and getting goosebumps as I watched this kid vault out of the tunnel on crutches, toss them down, take the mat and dismantle the reigning national champ” Hall said in a statement. “As miraculous an achievement as that was, the personal obstacles he faced off-the-mat were even more challenging. This is a tale of determination, perseverance and sacrifice and I’m honored to be telling the Robles’ story at a time when the world is so desperately in need of real heroes.”
Hall was nominated for an Oscar for best adapted screenplay in 2015 for “American Sniper.” The Clint Eastwood-directed film, which starred Bradley Cooper, was nominated for a total of six Academy Awards, including best picture.
Hall made his directorial debut with the 2017 war drama “Thank You for Your Service,” which starred Miles Teller and was produced by Steven Spielberg.
“Jason Hall has a magnificent reputation as both a screenwriter and director and I couldn’t be more excited to work with him on Unstoppable,” Robles said in a statement. “His films are about perseverance, resilience, and overcoming adversity, which are all pillars of my story as well. There couldn’t be a better choice of director than Jason.”
101 Studios is a new studio founded by former Weinstein Company COO David Glasser earlier this year. 101 released their first film, “The Current War,” last year after acquiring distribution rights from the bankrupt TWC.
Earlier this month the studio released the 2018 Sundance film “Burden,” starring Forest Whitaker as a pastor who takes in a reformed former Ku Klux Klan member, in a five theaters.
101 Studios has recently acquired U.S. rights to “La Belle Epoque,” a French comedy from director Nicolas Beods; the film and TV rights to “Paradise Found,” a non-fiction book written by Bill Plaschke about a group of survivors caught in the 2018 fire that ravaged Paradise, Calif; and U.S. distribution rights to “Mosul,” an Iraq War drama funded and produced by Anthony and Joe Russo’s production company AGBO
“At 101 Studios, the core of our company is about telling stories that ignite a cultural conversation–and that is precisely what Jason does best,” Glasser said in a statement. “He tells true stories about tenacity and determination. Anthony’s tenacity and determination are unparalleled and we look forward to Jason telling this story to audiences nationwide.”
“Unstoppable” will be produced by Dwayne Johnson, Dany Garcia and Hiram Garcia for Seven Bucks Productions, Andy Fraser for A Really Good Home Pictures, David Crockett for Coonskin Cap Productions, and Gary Lewis. The film will be executive produced by David Glasser, David Hutkin and Bob Yari.
Jason Hall is repped by Darren Trattner and UTA/Michael Sheresky, Ramses Ishak, Tracey Jacobs and Jeremy Zimmer. Leif Cervantes de Reinstein of Sheppard Mullin represented 101 Studios in the deal.