David Henrie (Wizards Of Waverly Place) is negotiating to join the cast of the basketball film Men Of Granite, joining Shirley MacLaine in the film based on a true story about a bunch of poor immigrant kids — Armenian, Macedonian, Yugoslavian and Hungarian — who triumph over small-town bigotry to win the 1940 state basketball championship. The film, which is currently completing financing, will shoot in Granite City, IL, a steel town across from St. Louis not far from the Mississippi River. I grew up there and went to school with the sons and daughters of the original basketball team, and in that city, the story is legendary; it did, in fact, change perceptions and undermine bigotry.
Henrie steps into the role of Evon Parseghian, one of the basketball players who is very poor, movie-star handsome and a helluva flirt. He sets his sights on a girl from the good side of the tracks (much to her father’s chagrin). William Hurt has expressed interest in playing the basketball coach. (more…)