The planned Chris Benoit biopic is moving forward with director Lexi Alexander, TheWrap has learned.
The film, currently entitled “Crossface,” will tell the story of former WWE superstar Benoit as he struggles to maintain his family life even as the pressures of wrestling spin him out of control.
Benoit, a former world champion wrestler, murdered his wife and son before taking his own life in 2007. He was posthumously diagnosed with CTE, severe brain degeneration often seen in NFL players, which one doctor believes is associated with his career as a wrestler. The film’s title is derived from Benoit’s signature submission hold, the crippler crossface.
Alexander will direct from a script by Jake Goldberger and Sarah Coulter. The film is based on the book “Ring of Hell: The Story of Chris Benoit & the Fall of the Pro Wrestling Industry” by Matthew Randazzo V.
Alex A. Ginzburg and Tony Lee will produce for Let It Play. Ram Getz and Randazzo will executive produce.
“I was pretty certain I’d stay in TV rather than returning to the feature world, because the material just seems so much better in TV, especially in drama, but then ‘Crossface’ came my way,” Alexander said. “A heartbreaking, true story about the dark side of wrestling… I couldn’t say no to that.”
Alexander is an Academy Award nominee for her short film “Johnny Flynton.” Her film “Green Street Hooligans,” starring Elijah Wood and Charlie Hunnam, was the second film ever at SXSW to win both the Best of the Fest and a Special Jury Award.
She became the first woman to direct a major comic book film when she took on “Punisher: War Zone” in 2008. More recently, Lexi has directed episodes of TV series including “Limitless,” “Supergirl” and “Arrow.” She is also a World Karate and Kickboxing Champion and an expert in mixed martial arts.