Sophie Wilkinson | News Editor | Thursday, 3 April 2014

Brad Pitt's Set To Make A Movie About The Steubenville Rape Case

The Debrief: The film will look at Deric Lostutter, the Anonymous vigilante who now faces ten years in prison for exposing the cover-up of two sustained sexual assaults of an underage girl...

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Brad Pitt's production company, Plan B, the same company behind Oscar-winning picture 12 Years A Slave, are to pick up on another grim story to bring to mass audiences – this time about the battle for hackers to expose what really happened in the Steubenville rape case. 

They’ve bought the rights to turn a Rolling Stone article, Anonymous vs Steubenville, (yep, articles have rights and can be bought and turned into films) into a blockbuster. In case you didn’t read it at the time, the incredibly grim article is about what happened when a girl was raped by two members of a football team in the US. In 2012, Ma’lik Richmond and Trent Mays plied the girl with alcohol and sexually abused her as they took the West Virginian girl from houseparty to houseparty in Steubenville, Ohio. They also took indecent photos of the underage girl without her consent and other teenagers present at the parties filmed and photographed the incident on camera phones, sharing the images over social media and mocking the girl.

So far, so depressing. But it gets worse. After the incident was reported to authorities, there seemed to be some sort of cover-up, in part down to the fact that Ma’lik and Trent were star players on a football team, which the entire town rallied around. Step in Deric Lostutter, of Anonymous, the internet-based group of vigilantes. Hacking into various social media accounts, he managed to uncover the cover-up (for which the Steubenville High School football coach is currently on trial, fyi).

The film is set to highlight these disparities in the American justice system. Deric now faces ten years in jail for his hacking, while the actual rapists have only gotten one year each.

As dark as it sounds, if this cyber-bullying story is anywhere near as powerful or moving as 12 Years A Slave – and from what we know of the story, it’s certainly headed that way – this’ll definitely be one to watch.

Follow Sophie on Twitter @sophwilkinson

Picture: Corbis 

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