Mark Wahlberg is GOING BIG in his search for the perfect director for the Caron Butler biopic -- we're told he's lasering in on 3 names ... Peter Berg, Spike Lee and Barry Jenkins.
Wahlberg has been gung ho about the project since securing the rights to make a movie based on Butler's life story last year.
The story is incredible ... Butler overcame a hard life as a drug dealing youth who was arrested more than 15 times to become an NBA champion.
Our sources tell us the first draft of the script is complete and Wahlberg's team has been in contact with all three directors. We're told the plan is for Wahlberg to have a major role in the flick.
All 3 directors have insane resumes ... Berg did "Friday Night Lights." Jenkins did "Moonlight." And Spike Lee is SPIKE LEE.
No word on who's gonna play Caron -- but Butler previously told us he'd love to see Michael B. Jordan take the role.
Stay tuned ...