Father Stu, the upcoming biographical drama starring Mark Wahlberg and Mel Gibson, has now been picked up by Sony. As reported by Deadline, the studio is now planning to release the movie later this year on Friday, April 15, with the news coming alongside our first image from the movie. Father Stu is something of a passion project for Wahlberg, with the actor having worked on bringing the life story of boxer-turned-priest Father Stuart Long to the big screen for some time.
“Father Stu’s journey from troublemaker to clergyman was inspiring to many, including me,” Wahlberg said of the inspirational real-life story. “Rosey has done an incredible job capturing the essence of who he was and how he affected the people he met. I hope that with this film, we keep his spirit alive and continue his good works.”
Father Stu will see Wahlberg take the lead as Father Stuart Long, who began life as an angry young man before turning to boxing as a release. Sadly, his career in the sport did not take off as he had hoped due to an injury, and so he decided to move to L.A. to pursue acting. The sadness continues though as this did not work out for Long either, as one evening he suffered a horrible motorcycle accident, being hit by one car, then run over by another. It was while staying in hospital that Stu had an out-of-body experience which caused him to rediscover his faith and enlist in Mount Angel Seminary in Oregon.
The truly dramatic life and times of Father Long does not stop there, as, while studying, he was diagnosed with a rare degenerative muscle disease and was forced to use crutches by the time he was ordained, a condition which ultimately resulted in the use of a motorized chair.
Father Stuart Long is now held up as an example of faith and love overcoming pain and hardship, and his life story is clearly primed for a dramatic adaptation on the silver screen.
Father Stu Will See Mark Wahlberg Undergo a Transformation
Father Stu will see the six-pack sporting Marky Mark Wahlberg undergo a startling physical transformation, with the actor gaining 30 pounds in six weeks in order to portray the real man’s up-and-downs. Wahlberg previously revealed that his new diet plan consisted of “20-piece chicken nugget and 20-piece hot wings from Kentucky Fried Chicken with a six-pack of beer” which just goes to show the efforts actors will go to for their craft.
Set images of Wahlberg as Father Stu have since been released, and the actor does look starkly different from what audiences will be used to. No doubt Wahlberg’s weight will fluctuate throughout the movie as the man goes from boxer to aspiring actor, to man of the cloth.
Father Stu is the feature directorial debut of Rosalind Ross and stars Jacki Weaver, Teresa Ruiz, Cody Fern, and Niko Nicotera alongside Mark Wahlberg and Mel Gibson.
Mark Wahlberg will next be seen in Sony’s adaptation of the popular video game, Uncharted. Mel Gibson meanwhile has several projects in the pipeline, including plans for Lethal Weapon 5.