Daniel Rodriguez hits the big screen with movie deal on forthcoming book

Sony Tri-Star won a bidding war with Universal for the movie rights to Tiger wide receiver's story

Clemson wide receiver and Purple Heart recipient Daniel Rodriguez greets fans during the Tiger Walk before Saturday's game against The Citadel.

Photo by Sefton Ipock

Clemson wide receiver and Purple Heart recipient Daniel Rodriguez greets fans during the Tiger Walk before Saturday's game against The Citadel.

You might have hit the big time when major film companies engage in a bidding war for movie rights to your yet-to-be-published autobiography.

Such is the case with Tiger wide receiver Daniel Rodriguez, whose personal story of his journey from the Battle of Kamesh to the top of Clemson's Hill - 'Rise: An Epic Story of a Soldier, His Dream and a Promise Kept' - will be pubished this fall.

Variety magazine reports that in a bidding war against Universal, Sony's TriStar Productions has won the movie rights for the forthcoming book.

Rodriguez, who wrote his story in conjunction with best-selling author Joe Layden, a Purple Heart and Bronze Star recipient, decided to join the military months before he graduated from high school, and spent two and a half years serving in both Iraq and Afghanistan.

According to Variety:

'Struggling with post traumatic stress disorder upon his return Stateside, Rodriguez pursued his dream, and a promise he made to himself on the battlefield, of playing Division 1 football. At 5’8”, 175 pounds and with a 1.9 high school GPA, the then 24-year-old veteran posted a YouTube video of himself talking about his skills on the battlefield and his background in the hopes of attracting attention from college coaches.'

The video, which has roughly 50,000 views, came to the attention of Clemson coach Dabo Swinney, who welcomed Rodriguez, who is attending school on the G.I. Bill, to walk on to the Clemson football team.

Currently a junior, Rodriguez serves as a backup receiver and special teams regular for the Tigers. He scored the first touchdown of his college career against The Citadel in November.

His book, which was acquired for publication for mid-six figures by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, is scheduled for release on October 7.

Winning the movie rights to Rodriguez's story is considered a major deal for Sony Pictures Entertainment, which hired former Fox co-chairman Tom Rothman to revitalize its TriStar Productions label. Ellen Goldmsith-Vein and Chris George from Gotham Group are producing the film.

Rodriguez shared the news on Twitter on Monday: "Well this is exciting news 4me! Sony Wins Rights to Inspirational Football Story http://bit.ly/1nIPkBE #RISE #tristar #Clemson #movie deal."

Rodriguez was involved in Battle of Kamdesh in Afghanistan on Oct. 3, 2009, when 300 Taliban fighters battled with 38 U.S. troops. Eight Americans lost their lives and 22 were injured, including Rodriguez.

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Comments » 3

brookesdad729 writes:

This is awesome! Way to go Daniel and Go Tigers! God picked a man of God in Coach Swinney to be there for you at just the right time! This was all a Devine Design! I love it!

Clemorange writes:

Congrats man!!

richardcd writes:

in response to Clemorange:

Congrats man!!

One couldn't buy the publicity that this brings to Clemson football.

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