The American Film Institute has announced that the upcoming Football medical drama Concussion will make its world premiere at the 2015 AFI Festival. The movie will be the Centerpiece Gala and will screen on November 10 at the TCL Chinese Theater in Hollywood.
Based on true events, the film stars Will Smith (Suicide Squad) as Dr. Bennet Omalu, the forensic neuropathologist who discovered Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE), a football-related injury that stems from head trauma. Dr. Omalu took his discovery to the NFL who argued that there is no connection between head trauma and playing football. Alec Baldwin (Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation) and Luke Wilson (The Skeleton Twins) also star in the movie.
The first trailer for the movie premiered at the end of August, right before the beginning of the NFL season. It caught the attention of movie and sports fans alike, particularly as the NFL is still under fire for the disease.
In response to the news, producers Ridley Scott and Giannina Scott stated:
AFI Fest is the perfect stage to release Concussion, and we are privileged to have been chosen as the Centerpiece Gala. Concussion is a powerful and uncompromising film about an issue that was ignored for far too long and continues to play out today. It’s a story that has to be told, and we are determined to tell it right.
The film is written and directed by Peter Landesman (Parkland) and releases in theaters Christmas Day.