EXCLUSIVE: Donald Sutherland and The Maze Runner‘s Blake Cooper are starring in Measure Of A Man, with Jim Loach (Orange and Sunshine) directing a script by David Scearce (A Single Man). The pic, an adaptation of Robert Lipsyte’s YA novel One Fat Summer, just got underway this week in Rhode Island. Christian Taylor is producing through Taylor Lane Productions with Weedon Media and Great Point Media, whose Jim Reeve and Robert Halmi are exec producing with Scearce and Erika Hampton.

blake cooperThe novel, which won prizes including Library of Congress Best Book for Children, is a nostalgic ’70s-set coming-of-age story about an overweight teenager (Cooper), who lacks confidence but experiences a turning-point summer in which he learns to stand up for himself. Sutherland plays Dr. Kahn, a Wall Street executive who gives the teen a summer job on his estate and teaches him the importance of hard work, determination and self-respect. Kahn finds an unexpected confidant in the youth, who helps him deal with losses in his own life.

CAA and ICM Partners are selling domestic. Sutherland is repped by CAA and attorney Jerry Longarzo, Cooper by Paradigm and Anonymous Content, Loach Curtis Brown, the Schuman Company and attorney Fred Toczek and Scearce by ICM and attorney Richard Thompson.