5 Sports Movies That Should Be Made
Sports and cinema have a long and storied history. A natural partnership exists between two of America's most popular forms of entertainment.
There have been incredible films based around real life events that have not only been box office smashes but were able to impact, influence, and inform audiences.
Here are five sports stories that have the potential to be Hollywood gold.
The current strife between the NFL Player's Association and the NFL would give the impression that the NFL as a league is one that should not be reckoned.
However, from 1983 to 1987 the USFL gave the NFL a run for their money with their brand of Spring Football.
Using gimmicks and celebrity as well as high profiled owners (Burt Reynolds and Donald Trump to name a few) the USFL is an underdog story, and America loves an underdog.
Focusing around the class of future NFL Hall of Famers such as; Jim Kelly, Steve Young, Herschel Walker, Reggie White, George Allen and Marv Levy, a film about the USFL could have tons of big name draw.
A legitimate story about the league would go a step further than the comical "The Replacements" or melodramatic "Any Given Sunday" and reflect on a day when the NFL weren't the only football league worthy of mention.
Many are familiar with Kendry Morales the Los Angeles Angels star who tragically fractured his left tibia after celebrating a walk-off homerun earlier this year.
Most are unaware of Kendry Morales the 16 year-old Cuban phenom. Who, was not only the no. 1 starting pitcher, but a switch hitting clean-up man for the Cuban national team. In 2003 and at just 20 years-old he led the Cuban National team to the World Cup Championship.
Then his story got interesting. In 2004 Morales was banned from play in Cuba and it's national team because the country believe he had talked to a MLB agent. He would then try unsuccessfully, 11 times to defect to the United States.
In 2004 on his 12th attempt he reached the shores of Florida and the rest the as they say is history.
The Galloping Ghost
The first successful professional football league was formed in 1920 but when Red Grange joined in 1925 it officially become the NFL.
Aside from being a three time All-American at the University of Illinois and one of only two players to have their number retired by the school, when Grange joined The Chicago Bears he became the league's first superstar (and ultimately it's first Hall of Fame inductee) .
When most players made less than $100 per game, Grange earned $100k in his first season.
The movie could focus on George Halas and Grange's 67-day, 19-game barnstorming tour that culminated in a sold out game at New York's Polo Grounds in front of 65,000 fans, which is credited with not only saving the New York Giants franchise but legitimizing the NFL as a whole.
The '69 Mets
The Mets lost a Major League record 120 games in their innaugural season (1962), never finished better than 9th in a ten team race, and posted sub .500 records every year except 1966
Turn the clock to the end of the turbulent 60's and you have a movie ideally directed by Oliver Stone or Martin Scorsese.
Set against the backdrop of the Vietnam War, the Kennedy Assasination, and Woodstock; manager Gil Hodges and 25-game winner Tom Seaver would help the Mets go from laughing stock to 'Amazin'
Jesse Owens & The '36 Berlin Games
World War II has proven to be a profitable subject for Hollywood stories, so imagine a film in which athletics are the focal point. If there is any "me against the world story" that deserves to be told it is that of Jesse Owens and the 1936 Berlin Olympics.
The Berlin games were to be as Adolph Hitler pronounced, the resurgence of the Nazi Party and example of "Aryan Racial Superiority".
Owens would almost singlehandedly tear down that notion as he won four gold medals (a feat only matched by Carl Lewis nearly 50 years later).
Two subplots within the story:
-Days before the start of the games Owens was asked by Addidas founder Adi Dassler to become the first African-American endorser of his track shoes.
-The relationship between German long lumper, Luz Long, whom Owens credited with providing not only support throughout the games but helpful advice for winning the gold medal in long jump.