Before CTE became a household name in the professional sports industry, there was Bennet Omalu fighting against the NFL for recognition of the degenerative disease linked to concussions and other such trauma to the head and neck area. Now a feature film, titled ‘Game Brain’, will be shot in Pittsburgh, PA to depict that struggle, per Trib-Live Sports. It will be based on a GQ article on the same topic and is rumored by Variety to feature Will Smith.
By now, it’s no secret that head trauma can lead to the serious degenerative disease, chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). As the articles notes, “CTE, definitively revealed by brain examination upon death, sometimes is found in athletes who experience repeated blows to the head. The disease is marked by problems with impulse control, headaches, slurred speech, memory loss, confusion, depression and dementia.”
However, when Allegheny County forensic pathologist Bennet Omalu first made the discovery with the brain of Steelers center Mike Webster, the NFL quickly came down on him and tried their best to keep the news behind the curtain. Webster played in the NFL from 1974 until 1990. He died in 2000 at age 50 after having suffered through many symptoms of CTE.
The move ‘Game Brain’ will document Omalu’s struggles not only with those suffering from injuries suffered in games, but also with the powers-that-be that wanted nothing more than to sweep it all under the rug. Work begins on the film in the coming weeks.