The latest addition to Broad Green Pictures’ expanding film slate is a hotly coveted property that will star Michael B. Jordan as renowned civil rights defense attorney Bryan Stevenson, founder of the Equal Justice Initiative who has fought to free condemned death row prisoners, including Walter McMillian. That case drew him into a tangled web of political machination and judicial conspiracy.
Variety adds that Paramount and Universal bid on the project before it landed at Broad Green, whose production leaders Victor Moyers and Asher Goldstein will oversee it.
Director Cretton broke out with 2013 SXSW winner and critics’ fave “Short Term 12” and has since been adapting another memoir, Jeannette Walls’ “The Glass Castle,” at Lionsgate.
Jordan has moved deftly between television (“The Wire,” “Parenthood”), indies (“Fruitvale Station,” his breakout role) and studio fare, including this Summer’s “Fantastic Four,” and he will star for “Fruitvale” director Ryan Coogler in the Rocky spinoff “Creed,” hitting theaters on Thanksgiving. (Watch trailer here.)
Executive producers on “Just Mercy” include Jordan and Stevenson; producer Gil Netter (“Life of Pi”) will produce and Arthur Spector will executive produce with Broad Green Pictures in association with Gil Netter Productions. Cretton and Andrew Lanham (“The Glass Castle”) are adapting the book, named one of the year’s best by The New York Times, The Washington Post and Time Magazine and winner of the 2015 Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Nonfiction by the American Library Association.