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Scarlett Johansson movie hits on 1970s Steelers, steroid ring |
Breakfast With Benz

Scarlett Johansson movie hits on 1970s Steelers, steroid ring

Tim Benz
| Tuesday, July 3, 2018 6:24 a.m
Steelers coach Chuck Noll smiles as he and quarterback Terry Bradshaw (12) watch the defense play against the Bengals in 1978.
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Scarlett Johansson attends the American Museum Of Natural History's 2017 Museum Gala at American Museum of Natural History on Nov. 30, 2017 in New York City.
Getty Images for SVEDKA Vodka
NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 12: Actress Scarlett Johansson attends New York Premiere of Sony's ROUGH NIGHT presented by SVEDKA Vodka at AMC Lincoln Square Theater on June 12, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images for SVEDKA Vodka)
Scarlett Johansson quits Pittsburgh-based ‘Rub & Tug’ film
A new Scarlett Johansson movie has roots in Pittsburgh and ties to the Steelers. She`s playing Dante "Tex" Gill, a notorious Pittsburgh figure from the...

A new Scarlett Johansson movie has roots in Pittsburgh and ties to the Steelers. She’s playing Dante “Tex” Gill, a notorious Pittsburgh figure from the 1970s who was renowned for running a ring of massage parlors that were thinly veiled fronts for prostitution.

Born in Pittsburgh, Lois Jean Gill always posed as a man. In fact, it was believed she may have started the initial stages of a sex change at some point in her life. Gill was described as short and frumpy and very masculine in appearance. So I’m not quite sure how Johansson is going to pull that off.

There is a dubious Steelers connection here. Check out this preview of “Rub & Tug.”

“Jean Marie Gill rose to prominence in the 1970s and became the crime kingpin of Pittsburgh. She took on the mob and managed to claim her power via her empire of illicit massage parlors. Hence the title “Rub & Tug,” which may actually underscore a bit of the real drama at play. Gill also was in charge of an anabolic steroids ring that helped fuel the Pittsburgh Steelers NFL dynasty.”

There’s no word on how much or how little the Steelers connection will be involved with the movie. Yahoo! says Gill’s relationship with wife Cynthia Bruno “forms the emotional core” of the film.

Don’t expect the Steelers to be on board promoting this movie or having Johansson doing the Terrible Towel wave on the sidelines before the game if the team is a focal point of the plot.

The movie will reunite Johansson with Rupert Sanders, her director from “Ghost in the Shell.” It’s said to be shot in the style of “American Hustle.” Deadline says New Regency will put out the film.

No word on a release date yet. Deadline says Tobey Maguire is in on production with Johansson, and Gary Spinelli wrote the script. He also wrote “American Made.”

Tim Benz is a Tribune-Review sports columnist. You can contact Tim via Twitter .

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