Sports and Hollywood have a strange relationship. Actors don’t always make for believable athletes and athletes can be awful actors. However, sometimes the two come together and give us wonderful, memorable movies. Major League, Rudy, Space Jam, Hoosiers, and Brian’s Song are classic movies that either star professional athletes or are about real life professional athletes — or both. So what modern sports teams deserve a movie made about them? And who might star in them? We have five suggestions.
1. 2001 New England Patriots
It’s easy to set the scene with this team. The New England Patriots were coming off a 5-11 season the year before. They started a rookie quarterback, Tom Brady, who they drafted in the sixth round. America just experienced the tragedy of September 11, 2001. As the NFL underdogs, the Patriots — how symbolic? — were ready to lift the country’s spirits.
New England went 11-5, worked their way to the Super Bowl against the heavily-favored St. Louis Rams, and then won the game by three points on a 48-yard field goal from kicker Adam Vinatieri. The Hollywood version: Michael C. Hall could play the young Brady; John C. Reilly could portray head coach Bill Belichek; and actor Mark Pellegrino could play Vinatieri.
2. 2004 Boston Red Sox
Okay, so the 2004 Boston Red Sox technically have the movie Fever Pitch, but that film was made before the team won the World Series and merely had a changed ending tacked on to wrap up things in a neat package. The fact is, Fever Pitch uses the ’04 Red Sox as the subplot — not the main focus. They lost in 2003, went down 0-3 in the ALCS, and stormed back to win the World Series; that is exciting stuff and deserves its own spotlight.
Plenty of actors could portray several of the main people surrounding the Red Sox, including local Bostonian Ben Affleck as general manager Theo Epstein, Kiefer Sutherland as Curt Schilling, Anthony Anderson as David Ortiz, and a bearded Shia LaBeouf as Johnny Damon.
3. 2015–16 Cleveland Cavaliers
This movie would involve a ton of drama. It could start with LeBron James leaving Cleveland for Miami, and then flash forward through four years of sadness to James returning home. Then, the film could show a montage of all the hard work from the 2014–15 season, which left an injured Cavaliers team just short against the Golden State Warriors in the NBA finals.
The next season, with the Cavs down 3-1 in the 2016 NBA Finals against the Warriors, the movie could chronicle their heroic comeback to take the series over the heavily favored, 73-9 Warriors. James could simply portray himself, as he proved to be a fairly decent actor in the movie Trainwreck. Chris Pratt could portray power forward Kevin Love, while Omari Hardwick could play point guard Kyrie Irving and Anthony Mackie could play shooting guard J.R. Smith.
4. 2016 Chicago Cubs
The 2016 Chicago Cubs created quite a story. They rolled through the regular season, putting together phenomenal pitching, the best defense in the league, and unmatched young hitting. They lost star slugger Kyle Schwarber to an early torn ACL, only to see him return to the team in the World Series. The Cubs went down 3-1 to the Cleveland Indians in the series, but they stormed back and won the final three games to take their first championship in 108 years.
And that Game 7 could probably get an entire movie of its own; it’s widely regarded as one of the best baseball games in recent history. The studio that picks up the film could cast Liam Hemsworth as third baseman Kris Bryant; Affleck as Epstein yet again; Matt Damon as general manager Jed Hoyer; Garret Dillahunt as Jake Arrieta; Michael B. Jordan as Jason Heyward; and Silas Weir Mitchell as John Lackey.
5. 2016–17 Golden State Warriors
The entire story isn’t written on the Golden State Warriors, but we already know that it’ll be worth telling. After losing in the 2016 NBA Finals in an embarrassing fashion — blowing a 3-1 series lead after having the most historic regular-season of all time, the Warriors brought in superstar Kevin Durant to add to their roster.
The Warriors understand how they’re viewed in the public eye, embracing the “villain” role given to them. Whether they figure things out and come together to win the NBA championship this year or fail spectacularly, there will be a major story to tell. Durant has acting experience and could probably portray himself, but you could also see actor Tequan Richmond as Stephen Curry and Neil Patrick Harris as head coach Steve Kerr.
Information courtesy of IMBD.com.