Father Stu is a 2022 biographical drama film written and directed by Rosalind Ross in her directorial debut. The film stars Mark Wahlberg, who also produces, as Stuart Long, a boxer-turned-Catholic priest suffering from inclusion body myositis. Father Stu was released in the United States on April 13, 2022, during Holy Week. The film received mixed reviews from critics but was acclaimed by audiences. It has grossed over $21 million.
Stuart Long is an amateur boxer from Helena, Montana with a foul mouth and a troubled relationship with his mother and alcoholic father. His brother Stephen died at age six, leading to a rift in the family and causing his parents to be hostile towards religion. He moves to southern California to try to make it as an actor, and gets a job in a grocery store, reasoning that everyone shops for groceries and it will be easier to get connected in the entertainment industry. He is arrested for a DUI and attempts to steal his father’s truck to make it to an audition.
While working in the store he meets a woman named Carmen, whom he tracks to a local Catholic parish, where she is a volunteer Sunday school teacher. Carmen resists his advances at first, but Stu is persistent. She tells him she would not even consider dating him unless he gets baptized. Stu agrees and begins RCIA at the parish. He is befriended by a fellow parishioner named Ham, but is looked down upon by another named Jacob. Both Ham and Jacob are headed for the seminary. Stu is baptized in the parish. He and Carmen begin dating and he later meets her parents.