Lee Daniels Takes on Biopic of Falsely Convicted Athlete Brian Banks

Lee Daniels, Brian Banks

Lee Daniels Takes on Biopic of Falsely Convicted Athlete Brian Banks

Plus, Charles S. Dutton joins Pooch Hall for football drama.

Published August 7, 2014

Lee Daniels has picked his next project. The Oscar nominee will direct a biopic on Brian Banks, a college athlete falsely accused of rape and forced to serve five years of a prison sentence before his accuser admitted she made the whole thing up.

Banks was an All-American high school football player who had committed to USC's prestigious football program in 2002, when his life was upended when a classmate falsely accused him of rape. A hasty plea-bargain resulted in Brian serving over five years and two months in prison, five years on parole and registering as a sex offender.

With the help of the California Innocence Project, Banks’s conviction was overturned in 2012. He returned to the gridiron after a 10-year hiatus, playing UFL football and going through six NFL tryouts before finally making the Atlanta Falcons’ 75-man roster in April 2013.

“All I ever wanted was to prove my innocence,” said Banks. “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.”

The project is currently seeking a writer and no cast has been attached as yet, but this is surely a prized role for a young Black actor.

But The Brian Banks Story isn't the only football drama in the works. Charles S. Dutton has just signed on to star in Carter High, a sports drama about a formidable high school football team in Texas that overcame adversity to win the Texas State Championship. After the win, nine of the scholarship players went on to commit a string of robberies and were apprehended before the start of their freshman college seasons, leading to prison sentences.

Vivica A. Fox
 and Pooch Hall will also star in the film.

BET.com is your #1 source for Black celebrity news, photos, exclusive videos and all the latest in the world of hip hop and R&B music.

Click here to subscribe to our newsletter.

(Photos from left:  Larry Busacca/Getty Images, AP Photo/Nick Ut)

Written by Evelyn Diaz


Latest in news