Nearly three years since his last film hit theaters, Ice Cube has signed on to play Jason Crutchfield, the coach of Olympic boxing champ Claressa ‘T-Rex’ Shields, in Universal’s sports drama Flint Strong, Collider has learned.
The project boasts a powerhouse trio behind the camera, as Oscar-nominated cinematographer Rachel Morrison (Mudbound) will make her feature directorial debut from a script by Oscar-winning writer Barry Jenkins (Moonlight), while Michael De Luca (The Social Network) will produce via his eponymous banner.
Flint Strong is based on the 2015 documentary T-Rex from Zackary Canepari and Drea Cooper. Actress-singer Ryan Destiny (Fox’s Star) will play Shields, who emerged from Flint, Michigan to become the first woman in history to win an Olympic gold medal in boxing. The studio acquired her life rights and the rights to the documentary back in 2016, sensing there was a movie in her inspirational story. Shields is also a survivor of sexual abuse who found strength in her Christian faith, per her Wikipedia entry.
Three-time Oscar nominee De Luca will produce alongside Elishia Holmes and Jenkins, while Canepari and Cooper will executive produce with Sue Jaye Johnson, who produced the documentary. Universal executives Erik Baiers and Tony Ducret will oversee the project for the studio.
Ice Cube hasn’t been seen on the big screen since the 2017 comedy Fist Fight, though he co-stars in Universal’s upcoming romantic drama Covers, which stars Dakota Johnson and Tracee Ellis Ross, and is set in the music industry. He was also nominated for a PGA Award as a producer on Universal’s hit drama Straight Outta Compton.
I happen to think Ice Cube is perfect for this role, as it’s easy to picture him as a no-nonsense boxing coach whose tough love gets results. He’s represented by WME, Prospect Park and Ziffren Brittenham. To read more about Covers, which co-stars Kelvin Harrison Jr. and Diplo, click here.