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Russell DePersia Writes First Screenplay

By Misty Schwartz

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Russell DePersia

DePersia, born in Camden, New Jersey, has already had a successful career as a semi-pro athlete and lawyer.DePersia now is pursuing another dream – writing for the big screen about one of his biggest passions, sports.


DePersia was raised in a supportive, sports-loving family.  DePersia’s father was a semi-pro football player and DePersia’s mother scheduled dinners so the family would not miss any big games, especially the Philadelphia Eagles. DePersia graduated from Rutgers School of Law and has maintained a criminal defense practice for over twenty years in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.  He was an accomplished collegiate athlete and, while pursuing a law career, was also a semi-pro football player and professional boxer.  He prides himself on bringing his “A” game in every aspect of his life; as a lawyer, athlete, writer, and father of twins, Roman and Giovanna.

DePersia used his love and knowledge of sports as inspiration to write his first screenplay Seasons Change. Created and written by DePersia, Seasons Change is a compelling sports drama that follows a young high school football star who dreams of becoming a professional football player. After a head injury on the field, he is forced to withdraw from the sport, leaving him unable to cope with an uncertain future.

“I really have a passion for sports," notes DePersia, “and believe that a person’s character can be positively molded by meeting the challenges and developing the discipline and dedication that sports demand… However, my lifetime involvement in sports also makes me aware of the many risks and dangers.  One theme of Seasons Change is risk awareness to create a healthy athletic experience that improves the athlete’s path in life.  Before young men and women are placed on certain athletic career tracks, we should first count all the concussions they may face in sports through their youth, high school, college, and if lucky enough (or unlucky enough) the pros.”

DePersia has done extensive research on concussions, chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), and second impact syndrome while writing Seasons Change. Through the years, DePersia observed on numerous occasions, including his own experiences, players being placed back into the action after being seriously hit. DePersia calls this “Warrior Mentality run amuck” and has witnessed its devastating effects as some of his teammates have become so “punch drunk” from sports injuries that they now have difficulty getting through their day-to-day lives. When DePersia saw the list of plaintiffs in the NFL concussion lawsuit, he realized how many of his childhood sports heroes were also so badly hurt.  This had a tremendous impact on him and made him realize this important message had to get out to educate society and became the basis for his creation of Seasons Change.

DePersia’s compelling screenplay promises to make a moving feature film that not only focuses on his love of sports, but also communicates this important message to the world. He plans to collaborate with producer Suzanne DeLaurentiis on the project.


DePersia is also working on a book he hopes to have published this summer.

Published on Mar 27, 2014

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