As usual Christmas Day will be another box-office showdown, Sony Pictures is now the latest studio to assign a premiere to the popular release-date. The studio confirmed this week that “Concussion,” the new drama starring Will Smith, will release on Christmas Day. Other highly-anticipated films that are releasing that week include Paramount Pictures’ “Monster Trucks” and David O. Russell’s “Joy” starring Jennifer Lawrence. That makes three popular films, with top-tier talent, releasing on the same day, but that still might not be the film to beat.
This Christmas will be a particularly unique box-office gauntlet, as the Disney-Marvel film “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” will release in theaters just one-week prior to December 25th, that is a popular release that could stretch across several weekends. Even with Star Wars landing on screens, ‘Concussion’ has a lot of staying power on its own, Smith will star as Dr. Bennet Omalu, the neuropathologist credited with pioneering the work on football-related brain trauma. Not only did Dr. Omalu make terrific breakthroughs in the diagnostic and treatment of these injuries, his work to raise awareness and change how the NFL addresses concussions is still a topic being discussed today.
Peter Landesman directed the drama, based on a script that he wrote himself. The script is loosely based on the popular GQ article “Game Brain,” which was written by Jeanne Marie Laskas. Also appearing in the film are Alec Baldwin, Luke Wilson, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Arliss Howard, Paul Reiser, David Morse and Albert Brooks. Ridley Scott, Giannina Facio, David Wolthoff, Larry Shuman and Elizabeth Cantillon are attached as producers, while David Crockett and Michael Schaefer are the executive producers.
Will Smith fans can also look forward to seeing Smith star in the film ‘Focus,’ from directors Glenn Ficarra and John Requa. Smith will co-star with Margot Robbie. That film is set to release on February 27, 2014.