Just when we thought that people may be running out of ideas for original and interesting scripts, Francis Lawrence (Red Sparrow) announces that he will be directing a film set to cover the bizarre and unforgettable trial between world-famous wrestler Hulk Hogan and Gawker Media.
The film’ script will be penned by The Big Short‘s Charles Randolph, and will be based on Ryan Holiday’s book Conspiracy: Peter Thiel, Hulk Hogan, Gawker, and the Anatomy of Intrigue. As noted by The Hollywood Reporter, Randolph spoke briefly about the project. “Ryan Holiday’s book and the story it tells are rare gifts for a screenwriter. These are such larger-than-life characters — strange, new volatile forces in society — and their conflict matters.”
Much like the book, the film will follow the lawsuit against Gawker Media that was filed by Hulk Hogan. Hogan filed the lawsuit when Gawker posted (and refused to remove) a portion of a sex tape of the WWE star and the wife of Tampa-area shock jock Bubba the Love Sponge. In the end, the jury ruled in Hogan’s favor, and he was rewarded a total of $140 million, which led to Gawker being shut down.
Characters in the film will include Hulk Hogan, the founder of Gawker, Nick Denton, and the secret financier of the lawsuit, Peter Thiel.
Lawrence stated the following about the film and his immediate inspiration: “When I read Ryan’s extraordinary book I was totally taken with this story, such an exquisitely contemporary tale, and I immediately had a vision for it as a film. It’s an important and meaningful story, and one I’m excited to tell.”
This, surprisingly, is not the first film to cover the odd and eccentric trial. In 2017, Netflix picked up the documentary Nobody Speak, which examined the trial. Another film titled Thiel v. Gawker (by director Jason Winer) is also in the works.