Oscar-nominated director Lee Daniels has signed on to direct the upcoming film, The Brian Banks Story, for Gidden Media. Banks, the promising high school All-American falsely accused of rape and later proven to be innocent, is the centerpiece of the film.
Gidden Media, ran by former CBS Films president and CEO Amy Baer, will produce the film. The script is currently being formed, and both Baer and Banks commented on the development in the project as reported by Deadline.
“Lee is a filmmaker who looks at challenging circumstances with honesty, compassion, and hope,” said Baer. “He has an emotional connection to Brian’s story that I’m certain will result in a powerful and redemptive film.”
Said Banks: “All I ever wanted was to prove my innocence. Telling my story in the form of a feature film is beyond my wildest dreams. Having Lee Daniels come on board to direct the film is so exciting and such an honor.”
Banks came to notoriety by way of a 60 Minutes profile, detailing his journey from the assault accusation and his fight for freedom. A classmate falsely accused him of the rape, which resulted in a hasty plea bargain deal that led to a five-year prison sentence. The California Innocence Project lobbied on behalf of Banks, and his conviction was overturned in 2012.
Banks eventually returned to football, landing on the Atlanta Falcons 75-man roster in 2013. Banks now works with the California Innocence Project and hosts speaking engagements.
There is no release date set for the film as of yet.
Photo: Hugh Dillon/WENN