Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 04/26/13 at 07:45 PM ET
from Mike Fleming JR of Deadline,
Attention on the long-term brain damage suffered by contact sports stars has primarily fallen on pro football because of the tragic suicides of superstars like Junior Seau and Dave Duerson, both of whom left behind their brains for study on how on-field collisions made retirement life too much to bear. But the problem reaches other sports, including hockey, and Focus Features and Peter Berg are tackling the issue by focusing on renowned enforcer Derek Boogaard. A shy, oversized player who learned to use his fists to make it to the National Hockey League, Boogaard became hooked on painkillers from years of damage, and was found dead at age 28 after mixing prescription drugs with booze.
Focus has made a deal with The New York Times for an eye-opening series of articles by John Branch entitled Punched Out: The Life And Death Of A Hockey Enforcer. Berg and Film 44 partner Sarah Aubrey are producing, and Berg hopes to direct. Ryan Condal is writing the script, and Josh McLoughlin will oversee the pic. The deal was made by ICM Partners, which reps the Times, and also reps Boogard’s estate and his mother and father, Len and Joanne Boogaard. All of the money they make will go to a charity set up for their son.
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