(EVO) – Sony Pictures Entertainment executives altered the script of the studio’s forthcoming movie “Concussion,” about football-related brain trauma, to avoid antagonizing the National Football League, the New York Times reported on Wednesday (September 2).
Citing emails between Sony studio executives that were leaked by hackers last year, the Times said marketing plans for the movie were positioned to focus on the story of a whistle-blower, rather than a condemnation of the sport.
Sony said on Wednesday that the New York Times story “contains many misleading references” and that nothing had been “softened” in the film to placate anyone.
The movie, starring Will Smith as a pathologist who diagnosed a degenerative brain disease in U.S. football players, is due in movie theaters in December. A first trailer was released on Monday, and the movie is seen as a potential Oscar contender.
The NFL in April settled a lawsuit brought by about 5,000 former players who accused it of covering up the dangers of concussions.