George Clooney’s Smokehouse Pictures and Sports Illustrated Studios are teaming up to produce a documentary series about the alleged abuse that took place at Ohio State University (OSU) by sports doctor Richard Strauss. It’s based on Sports Illustrated executive editor and writer Jon Wertheim’s digital cover story from Oct. 2020, titled “Why Aren’t More People Talking About the Ohio State Sex Abuse Scandal?”
Wertheim’s expose revealed the extent of Strauss’ alleged sexual assaults and manipulation of over 350 (reported) student athletes and the lack of response from university officials’ that led to a three-decade long scandal. Heavyweight Champion and OSU alum Mark Coleman gave his detailed account to Wertheim, including disclosing Strauss’ administration of anabolic steroids.
Coleman, along with some others, also accused Congressman Jim Jordan of ignoring this alleged abuse when he served as the assistant wrestling coach from 1986-1994. Rep. Jordan has denied any knowledge of the abuse. Strauss’ died by suicide in 2005. Hundreds of his victims continue to seek justice. Only 162 have reached a settlement of $250,000 each and there are over 250 claims still pending.
Clooney, along with Smokehouse Pictures co-founder Grant Heslov, will serve as executive producers of this docuseries along with Wertheim. “We’re very pleased to partner with 101 Studios and Sports Illustrated in bringing this devastating and tragic story to light,” they said in a press release. No outlet is attached to release it yet.