‘The Iron Claw’: First Image Teases Zac Efron in the Upcoming Wrestling Biopic!! Check It Out!!

A24 has unveiled the first look at their upcoming wrestling dramatic biopic The Iron Claw, about the legendary von Erich wrestling dynasty that ruled the sport from the 1950s until the 1990s. A24 took to Twitter to reveal the image, showcasing an enormous Zac Efron hitting a flying drop-kick on his opponent. Efron has clearly made serious efforts to get into convincing physical shape to take on the role of Kevin von Erich, the “Golden Warrior” of the family.

The film is based on the true story which focuses on the Von Erich family, a legendary dynasty of wrestlers whose lives and careers were marked both by equally legendary heights and tragedies. The rise and fall of the von Erichs led to them being compared to the Kennedy family of professional wrestling, and they have even been labeled as cursed, such is the bad luck that has befallen them over the years to the point that Kevin, the character Efron plays, is the only remaining living family member from that generation. Kevin Von Erich has said that Efron “looks great, he must be working really hard” and that he had been in conversation with director Sean Durkin about the progress of the film.

The film also features Lily James, fresh off her appearance in Pam and Tommy, alongside Harris Dickinson, who recently starred in Where the Crawdads Sing. Holt McCallany (Mindhunter) appears alongside Jeremy Allen White (Shameless) and Maura Tierney (ER), while Durkin (Martha Marcy May Marlene) directs and writes the movie with Tessa Ross, Juliette Howell, and Angus Lam.

Image via A24

The Von Erich family were born as ‘Adkisson’ but every member of the family that joined the wrestling business used the stage name (or ‘ring name’) of Von Erich after their family patriarch, Fritz von Erich. Fritz was an intimidating character who became a fearsome bad guy (‘heel’ in wrestling parlance) in the wrestling territories due to his finishing move, ‘The Iron Claw’. He became a wrestling promoter, rather than performer, in his advancing years. In doing so, he was able to promote his sons and advance their careers as major celebrities in their own rights. Fritz eventually died a natural death, but the same couldn’t be said of the majority of his family.

The Von Erich curse, as it goes by, began in 1959 when Jack Adkisson Jr., the eldest son of Fritz, died at the age of six. David Von Erich, the third son, was known as ‘the Yellow Rose of Texas’ and died suddenly at the age of 26, in Tokyo. The US embassy’s death report stated that he died of acute enteritis, but the legendary wrestler Ric Flair stated in his autobiography that the belief was he had died of an accidental drug overdose.

David’s funeral was attended by thousands of mourners. The fourth son, Kerry Von Erich, was known as the ‘Texas Tornado’ and was easily the best known of the family, as well as the most talented. Kerry shot himself in 1993 on his father’s ranch, with wrestler Bret Hart stating that Kerry had told him his late brothers were calling him, following his marriage’s dissolution. The fifth and sixth sons, Mike and Chris Von Erich, died at the ages of 23 and 21 respectively. Mike took a fatal dose of tranquilizers following a shoulder injury while touring in Israel. Chris was never as successful as his elder brothers, and in 1991, shot himself in the head.

The Von Erich family was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame, in recognition and appreciation of their services to the wrestling industry, in 2009. Kevin Von Erich accepted the induction on their behalf.

The film is slated to have a 2023 release date.

via Collider

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