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Levinson Helming "Brother Jack" Biopic About Human Rights Pioneer

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    MONTE-CARLO, MONACO - JUNE 07: Director Barry Levinson (R) and actress Brenda Vaccaro (L) pose at a photocall for the TV series 'You don't know Jack' during the 2010 Monte Carlo Television Festival held at Grimaldi Forum on June 7, 2010 in Monte-Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Barry Levinson;Brenda Vaccaro

    Barry Levinson's day started with a bushel of Emmy nominations and now, before lunchtime in Hollywood, comes word that he's got his next feature film lined up, a movie about human rights pioneer "Brother Jack" Healy.

    "Brother Jack" is "the coming of age story of an idealist who leaves the priesthood for a life on the streets and successfully wages a one man war to elevate the issue of human rights," according to a press release from Sony Pictures. 

    Healy was born and raised in Pittsburgh before going on to work with the Peace Corps, United Nations and most recently Human Rights Action Network. Along the way, he organized hundreds of walks against hunger and several concerts, films and albums to promote his causes.

    The screenplay is being written by Harley Peyton, who worked with Levinson on "Bandits," and a current rewrite is being done by Kelly Masterson, who penned 2007's fantastic "Before the Devil Knows You're Dead." 

    “Barry Levinson is one of the industry’s most thoughtful, accomplished and acclaimed directors. His work chronicling the life of Dr. Jack Kevorkian was brilliant and we think his take on how one social activist can influence a nation will be equally engaging and compelling,” said Columbia Pictures president Doug Belgrad.

    News of "Brother Jack" comes just hours after Levinson's previous work about a civil rights pioneer named Jack, the HBO film "You Don't Know Jack," starring Al Pacino as Jack Kevorkian, grabbed 15 Emmy nominations. Both Levinson and Pacino were recognized, as were supporting actresses Susan Sarandon and Brenda Vaccaro, among others.