Jon Voight to Star as Bear Bryant in Alabama High School Football Movie (EXCLUSIVE)

'Woodlawn': Jon Voight Starring as Bear
Jesse Grant/Getty Images

Jon Voight has been cast as iconic college football coach Paul “Bear” Bryant in the independent high school football movie “Woodlawn.”

The sibling directing team of Jon and Andrew Erwin (“Moms’ Night Out”) are currently shooting “Woodlawn” in Birmingham, Ala., from a screenplay by Jon Erwin and Quinton Peeples. Kevin Downes and Daryl Lefever are producing.

The story is focused on star African-American player Tony Nathan and the spiritual awakening during 1973-74 season at Woodlawn High School in Birmingham amid forced integration of Alabama’s public high schools. Nathan was successfully recruited by Bryant to play for the University of Alabama and went on to a successful professional career.

The key event will be the 1974 Banks vs. Woodlawn game, which drew over 40,000 spectators at Legion Field, where filming took place recently at night during sub-freezing temps.

During his 25 years as head coach for the “Crimson Tide,” Bryant won six national championships and 323 games.

Voight joins a cast that includes Nic Bishop as Woodlawn coach Tandy Gerelds; Sean Astin, who starred in “Rudy” as the team’s counselor and mascot Hank Erwin; C. Thomas Howell as rival coach George “Shorty” White; Sherri Shepherd as Nathan’s mother, Lance Nichols as Nathan’s father; newcomer Caleb Castille as Nathan; and Richard Kohnke as rival quarterback Jeff Rutledge.

The Erwin brothers began their career as teenagers in Birmingham, working as camera operators for ESPN and covering games at the University of Alabama. The brothers went on to become full-time sports cameramen covering a wide variety of sports for ESPN.

Castille is a student at the University of Alabama and former player for the football team. He left the team in 2013 to pursue acting. His father, Jeremiah, is a former NFL player.

Voight stars in “Ray Donovan” and won a Golden Globe last year for his supporting role. He’s repped by CAA.

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  1. Autumm Bryant says:

    Wonderful news!
    From The Bryant Bunch
    My husband is William F. Bryant III and Pauls great nephew!
    RTR

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