Brian De Palma, a filmmaker not exactly renowned for his subtlety, has just agreed to reteam with Al Pacino for a new motion picture that's bound to be controversial, according to Deadline. The men who brought you Carlito's Way and the remake of Scarface have agreed to make Happy Valley, a film dramatizing the life of legendary Penn State football coach Joe Paterno, whose long-standing and celebrated career in college sports was marred by controversy when news came to light in 2011 that his assistant coach, Jerry Sandusky, was a child molester, and that Paterno – along with several other officials at Penn State – had helped cover up Sandusky's crimes by not reporting them to the police, in order to save the school from scandal.
Despite the severity of the allegations, supporters of Paterno turned out in droves to protest his dismissal from Penn State, which could result in a rousing but morally conflicted finale to De Palma's film, which is being written by David McKenna, himself no stranger to controversial material, having written the Oscar-nominated Neo-Nazi drama American History X. McKenna is no stranger to De Palma either, having written for the 2006 video game Scarface: The World is Yours.
We are in no way experts in the case in question, but regardless, Happy Valley seems destined to be a hot button motion picture. If De Palma takes a firm stance on the events in question, his film could be met with naysayers from either side. Pacino has dealt with troubling moral issues before, in films like 2010's You Don't Know Jack (about the famous, or possibly infamous, euthasia-supporter Jack Kevorkian), and is certainly going to raise eyebrows with his performance now matter what Happy Valley's take on Joe Paterno's life is. Critics, pundits, sports fans and everyone else is bound to be watching the development of Happy Valley very, very closely.