Al Pacino to play Joe Paterno in new biopic

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Tony D'Amato (Al Pacino), the head coach of the Miami Sharks, won back-to-back championships four years ago. But new team owner Christina Pagniacci (Cameron Diaz) has little enthusiasm for the finer points of the game and is concerned only with the bottom line.
September 11th, 2012

Al Pacino is set to play late American football coach Joe Paterno in an upcoming biopic.

The Oscar-winning 'Godfather' actor will star as the lead character in the as-yet untitled film, which will be based on former Sports Illustrated writer Joe Posnanski's biography 'Paterno'.

The film is currently being pitched to the studios and no screenplay has been written yet but it has been confirmed that Al's manager, Rick Nicita, will produce, Deadline reports.

Although he was never involved in any criminal activity, Joe was fired from his job at Pennsylvania State University after his former defensive co-ordinator Jerry Sandusky was accused of abusing children over 15 years and a jury later convicted Sandusky of 45 of the 48 counts against him. He is now in prison awaiting sentence.

The motion picture will explore Joe's life before the Penn State scandal right up until his downfall.

This miscarriage of justice caused students to protest in support of Joe, which turned into riots in the streets.

Joe, who had worked at the university since 1950 as assistant coach and later coach, died in January this year of cancer.

Al, 72, has already played the role of a football coach in the sideline of Oliver Stone's 1999 movie 'Any Given Sunday'.