UPDATE: The studio is now in talks to add Gugu Mbatha-Raw to the concussion cast, as she is getting strong notices in Toronto for Beyond The Lights.
Sony Pictures is setting Albert Brooks to join the untitled project on football concussions that so far stars Will Smith and Alec Baldwin. Parkland’s Peter Landesman is writing and directing, based on the GQ article Game Brain that Ridley Scott and Giannina Facio set up to produce at the studio, along with Shuman Company’s David Wolthoff and Larry Shuman.
Brooks will play Cyril Wecht, the chief forensic pathologist who mentors forensic neuropathologist Dr. Bennet Omalu (Smith) and encourages him to press his discovery of CTE, the concussion syndrome that has been fatal in contributing to the suicides of former NFL superstars Dave Duerson and Junior Seau. The NFL fought this tooth and nail, but ultimately reached a $765 million settlement in the long term debilitating effects of concussions.
Brooks takes the job after completing the JC Chandor-directed A Most Violent Year opposite Oscar Isaac and Jessica Chastain. He is also reprising his role in the Finding Nemo sequel Finding Dorie, as well as Pets, the Illumination Entertainment pic. He’s repped by WME and managed by Herb Nanas.