R.A. Dickey has played the part of beguiling knuckleball artist to the tune of a Cy Young Award. However, if all goes according to plan, his entire life could just captivate a movie audience.
Actors Ben McKenzie and Logan Marshall-Green have joined forces to launch the shingle A Thing Or Two Productions. They come to the table in a big way. Tom Rothman’s TriStar Pictures has made a deal on a baseball memoir which the duo will produce with Michael De Luca. TriStar has optioned Wherever I Wind Up, the memoir by pitcher R.A. Dickey about his unusual life journey. Buzz Bissinger has been set to write the script. It becomes another eclectic project for Rothman’s upstart division.
Bissinger's work spans a wide swath of publications, but he may be most famous for his work Friday Night Lights: A Town, a Team, and a Dream, which later became a movie and hit television series.
Baseball fans may be well acquainted with the subject matter of Dickey's life. The Toronto Blue Jays pitcher struggled last season but was absolutely brilliant in 2012, winning the NL Cy Young after posting 20 wins and a 2.73 ERA.
It's the journey that led him to that pinnacle that really resonates with fans and more than likely enthralled Hollywood to come calling.
His memoir was critically acclaimed as he told a tale of overcoming adversity that included being molested as an 8-year old and nearly losing his dream of becoming a pro pitcher. He was drafted by the Texas Rangers and offered a huge signing bonus, only to see the latter get taken away when the team discovered that Dickey was missing an important ligament in his pitching elbow.
In a 2012 Sports Illustrated interview, Dickey relayed to L. Jon Wertheim on his initial throes into writing his memoir: "I had to write what was true, even if it meant going to some dark places."
If the movie makes its way to the screen, one can assume it will be as honest a script as possible. In the same interview, Dickey offers about his own memoir, "I couldn't share my story and not share the most difficult parts of it. As a reader, I can tell when someone is skating around the truth."
Fleming reports Dickey had other offers, but McKenzie (The O.C., Southland, Gotham) and Marshall-Green (Devil, Prometheus) decided it was best to meet the star pitcher in person, which paid off handsomely for the duo and their budding production company.
There is no guarantee that Dickey's tale makes it to the big screen. With a poignant and gripping story that already inspires, you have to absolutely love its chances.
It's the honesty that grabs fans regardless of their allegiances, so a story so enthralling deserves its day in movie theaters around the country.
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