Scenes That May Be Omitted from the New Sepp Blatter Film 'United Passions'

Ryan BaileyFeatured ColumnistMay 22, 2014

Scenes That May Be Omitted from the New Sepp Blatter Film 'United Passions'

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    Thibault Camus/Associated Press

    Using a tiny proportion of the money they would make from staging a World Cup, FIFA have financed a new film called United Passions.

    The vanity project—which launched this week at the Cannes Film Festival—stars Gerard Depardieu as World Cup creator Jules Rimet, Sam Neill as former FIFA president Joao Havelange and Tim Roth as the incumbent head honcho Sepp Blatter.

    According to the Guardian, the film bills itself as "a group of passionate European mavericks" coming together to create FIFA.

    Blatter is among those said to be portrayed as "a visionary and icon of the global game," perhaps owing to the fact that the 78-year-old is thought to have tweaked the script himself.  

    The trailer suggests the film won't trouble the Palme d'Or voters, with its saccharine depiction of an organisation blighted by controversies, scandals and a tremendously incompetent leader.

    In light of Blatter's apparent role in the script editing process, here are some of the scenes that might be changed or suspiciously absent from the final cut. 

The Scene Where He Suggests Cristiano Ronaldo Is a Slave

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    John Gichigi/Getty Images

    In 2008, Blatter put his foot in his mouth for the umpteenth time in his career by suggesting Manchester United's reticence to let Cristiano Ronaldo leave was the equivalent of "modern slavery." 

    Because obviously that's an appropriate analogy for an internationally adored megastar who is paid upwards of €250,000 a week to do his dream job.

    In the film, perhaps Tim Roth's Blatter will simply say that Ronaldo needs a "modern shave"—with a razor produced by a FIFA advertising partner. He then holds one up to the camera and flashes a million-dollar smile while stroking his delectably smooth chin. 

The Scene Where He Says Women Should Wear Smaller Shorts

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    Christof Koepsel/Getty Images

    In 2004, the former president of the World Society of Friends of Suspenders (seriously) showed he was completely in touch with gender equality by suggesting female players should wear shorter shorts:

    Let the women play in more feminine clothes like they do in volleyball.

    They could, for example, have tighter shorts. Female players are pretty, if you excuse me for saying so, and they already have some different rules to men - such as playing with a lighter ball. That decision was taken to create a more female aesthetic, so why not do it in fashion?

    A big-budget film usually features some gratuitous and unnecessary shots of under-dressed ladies, but Blatter will probably save all that for the DVD extras of the unrated version.

    The shorts comment will remain, but Blatter will rewrite it to suggest that it was actually that pesky Jack Warner who said it.

The Scene Where He Claimed There Was No Racism in Football

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    Shaun Botterill/Getty Images

    When Donald Sterling, the owner of NBA team the LA Clippers, was discovered to have said something racist, he was immediately thrown out of the league and banned for life.

    By contrast, the FIFA president suggested that football players who have been racially abused should just shake hands at the end of the game and get on with their lives. 

    These are hardly the comments of "a visionary and icon of the global game," so this scene will probably be cut. Instead, we'll get one of Tim Roth sitting with his fingers in his ears humming loudly for five minutes.

The Scene Where He Awards a World Cup to Qatar

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    Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

    Blatter appeared to have been given several million reasons to believe Qatar was a suitable nation to host a World Cup, but he has apparently changed his stance by suggesting the decision reached by his completely unregulated and financially motivated organisation was a "mistake."  

    In the film, this scene is still included. However, shortly after admitting his mistake, Blatter wakes up in a cold sweat and the viewer realises it was all a dream.

    Then, as he gets dressed to go out and do some of his regular humanitarian work, he slowly realises his incorruptible committee has actually awarded the tournament to Australia. Or the USA. Or Japan. Or absolutely anyone else. 

The Scene Where He Falls over

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    On the big screen, this scene will show an alternate angle, proving that Blatter was actually diving down to save a puppy from being drowned by an evil Guardian journalist under the stage.  


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