'Birth of a Nation' Director Nate Parker to Pen Screenplay About High School Wrestlers, ESPN Producer Lisa Fenn
The Walden Media project will follow the story of Fenn returning to her Cleveland hometown to profile two young disabled wrestlers.
Following the Sundance success of The Birth of a Nation, Nate Parker will write a screenplay based on the life events of ESPN producer Lisa Fenn and two disabled wrestlers.
The film will tell the story of the Emmy-winning features producer and her 2009 return to her Cleveland, Ohio, hometown to report on the story of Dartanyon Crockett and Leroy Sutton-- students at an impoverished public high school that became accomplished wrestlers despite Crockeet being legally blind and Sutton having lost both of his legs in a adolescent train accident..
The Fenn-produced segment is one of the most watched specials in ESPN.com history. Fenn's memoir, Carry On, which tells the story of her experience with the two young men, will be released by HarperCollins in August.
Walden Media will develop, produce and finance the film. Mark Ciardi and Anthony Mastromauro will produce the Parker-penned script and Campbell McInnes will act as executive producer.
In addition to the memoir, Walden Media has picked up the Fenn’s life rights, along with life rights to Crockett and Sutton.
Parker, an established actor with roles in The Great Debaters and Beyond the Lights, made waves at this year's Sundance Film Festival with his slave revolt drama The Birth of a Nation, which won the Audience Award and Grand Jury Prize and was acquired by Fox Searchlight for an astonishing $17.5 million.
Parker is repped by CAA, Anonymous and Hirsch Wallerstein.