June 16 (UPI) — A24 studio confirmed Thursday that Zac Efron will star in The Iron Claw, which is based on the true story of the Von Erichs wrestling dynasty.
The film follows the famous Texas-based Von Erich (real name Adkisson) wrestling family, which made a huge impact on wrestling since the 1960s, through their triumphs and tribulations.
The journey began with Fritz Von Erich (born Jack Barton Adkisson), a top star in National Wrestling Alliance promotions, who was known for his wrestling hold, called “The Iron Claw,” and achieved multiple belts in the 1960s before becoming president of the organization.
Fritz and his wife, Doris, had six sons, five of whom died before him, leading to talk of the “Von Erich curse.” Fritz died in 1997. Two of the sons of Kevin Von Erich, the last surviving brother, who has retired from wrestling, are still wrestling today.
In 2009, the Von Erich family were inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame.
Sean Durkin, who gained critical acclaim for his direction of the Sundance film Martha Marcy May Marlene about a woman who fled an abusive cult, will direct A24’s The Iron Claw.
A24, which is set to finance the film, is also producing alongside Tessa Ross, Derrin Schlesinger and Harrison Huffman.
Efron will also star in the upcoming Vietnam war drama, The Greatest Beer Run Ever on Apple TV+ based on a true story about John “Chickie” Donohue (Efron), who decided to bring some beer to childhood friends in the Army while they were fighting in the war. The film is based off of a book by Joanna Molloy and Donohue, and written and directed by Peter Farrelly and co-written by Brian Currie, who also co-wrote the Oscar winning Green Book with Farrelly.
Last year, Efron won a daytime Emmy for his Netflix documentary series Down to Earth with Zac Efron about sustainable living practices around the world, which is now shooting its second season.