Sports Movies That Have to Be Made
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When people think of the greatest sports movies of all time, they tend to think of Field of Dreams, Rocky, Hoosiers, Miracle, and Raging Bull.
This slideshow covers people, events and teams that are associated with sports but have yet to have Hollywood make a dramatic interpretation of them. You'll find your typical sports here: baseball, hockey, football and basketball; but you'll also more obscure sports like skateboarding, pro wrestling and mixed martial arts.
Hopefully you will agree with my choices, and feel free to offer your own suggestions in the comment section.
The 2009-2010 New Orleans Saints
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In 2005 New Orleans was virtually destroyed by Hurricane Katrina. The New Orleans Saints' home stadium, The Superdome, sustained heavy damage, and the team did not play there the entire 2005 season. That was the least of the city's rebuilding problems, though.
Rumors began to spread that the team would move to San Antonio, mainly because Saints owner Tom Benson did not think the city would recover quickly enough to host an NFL team. Fast forward five years and the Saints won the Super Bowl and completed New Orleans' resurgence as a major city.
The 1941 MLB Season
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In 1941 the country listened in on their radios to witness one of the greatest seasons in baseball history. Joe DiMaggio hit in 56 straight games and Ted Williams became the last man to hit .400.
This film would chronicle the two men's coinciding career seasons and the different personalities of the two players. The film could also chronicle the upcoming World War II and the two players' service during the conflict
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Even the best screenwriter in Hollywood couldn't make up a story like this.
A film character like Tiger is what moviegoers crave, and his life is being played out before our very eyes. From child prodigy to golf star to international superstar to international disgrace, Tiger's life is just begging to be made into a movie.
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This movie could cover a number of subjects starting with the Edmonton Oilers' epic run at the top during the 80s. Gretzky's celebrity status would be covered as well as how he influenced an entire generation of hockey players.
The meat of the movie, though, would be Gretzky's controversial trade to the Los Angeles Kings, the effect it had on his career and the effect it had on hockey in California. The film should also show Gretzsky's ability to bring new fans to hockey due to his incredible play.
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What Wayne Gretzky is to hockey, Tony Hawk is to skateboarding. Tony Hawk is the man that put pro skateboarding on the map and is considered the greatest skateboarder of all-time.
This movie should cover Hawk's rise to fame after completing the "900" trick and his influence on the sport. Hawk's early days as a struggling skateboarder in California need to be explored as well.
The Rise of UFC
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This movie would look at the UFC's humble beginnings as a brutal, no-holds-barred combat sport on the SEG network and the cult following that developed due to the pay-per-views offered by SEG. Real film of the original fights could be mingled with film from the movie.
The movie would focus on the UFC's reinventing itself after the federal and state governments banned no-holds barred fighting. A montage could be done showing the UFC's gradual transition from crazy brawling to a sport with rules. The focal point of the film should be on Dana White and how he took a company on the brink of bankruptcy to being one of the most watched sports in the world.
Have a Nice Day: The Mick Foley Story
This movie could be a direct adaption from pro wrestler Mick Foley's first autobiography. Mick Foley is one of the most unique men in wrestling. His willingness to put his body on the line for the crowd is unparalleled. Foley was one of the faces of the late 90s wrestling boom and helped the WWE beat WCW in a ratings war.
Foley's numerous injuries, like having his ear torn off, his numerous concussions and losing several of his teeth have to be included in the film. Foley's career before joining the WWE would make up the majority of the film. So his days wrestling in WCW, ECW, and with independent promotions in Japan would be the main story here.
What would make this movie even more interesting is if real film of Foley's matches were used.
Larry Bird vs. Magic Johnson
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This is the greatest rivalry in sports history. It was also the most unique, which makes it perfect for a movie. This is the only rivalry that I know of that can be traced all the way back to two players' college days.
The contrast in the two's personality would also be great for a movie. Magic is an open and charismatic man who is comfortable with his celebrity status. Larry, on the other hand, is quiet and uncomfortable with his fame. Magic's team, the L.A. Lakers, represented glitzy Hollywood while Larry's Boston Celtics represented blue-collar determination.
What needs to be emphasized in this film is the fact that before this rivalry, the NBA was on the verge of bankruptcy and needed something to spark interest in the league again. Magic Johnson's and Larry Bird's contrasts provided television gold that helped the NBA become one of the biggest sports in the country.
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Jim Abbott was born without a right hand. That didn't stop him from pitching, and it didn't stop him from playing in the big leagues.
Abbott pitched for 10 years in the MLB and threw a no-hitter in 1993. Despite not having a right hand, Abbott was a decent fielding pitcher.
The 1970's Oakland Raiders
One of the greatest football teams of the decade was also one of the craziest. The team had a beer once in a while on the sidelines during games. Think that's crazy? The team's drinking buddies on sidelines were the Black Panthers and the Hells Angels. These guys were football players but lived the sex, drugs and rock-n-roll lifestyle.
The 1936 Olympics
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In 1936 the world got a taste of what of what Germany had become under the iron fist of Adolf Hitler. Hitler only allowed members of the "Aryan Race" to compete for Germany. Jews and Gypsies were banned from attending or participating in the events.
Four-time world record holder and 10-time German National Champion Lilli Henoch was banned because she fell into the former category. In 1942 Henoch, her mother and dozens of other Jews were killed by an S.S. firing squad and buried in a mass grave.
It was a depressing Olympics for the world as Germany won the majority of the medals, but Jesse Owens proved Hitler wrong about his assumptions. Hitler predicted only his Aryan athletes would win because they were genetically superior to other athletes. Track star Jesse Owens won four gold medals during the games, showing the rest of the world that Hitler's supermen weren't so super after all.
Joe Louis vs. Max Schmeling
This was more than a match for the world title to boxing fans. This was democracy vs. fascism, America vs. Nazi Germany and freedom vs. oppression. Joe Louis had the weight of the free world on his shoulders when he faced Schmeling for the second time in two years. The first time, Louis came up short against the more experienced Schmeling. The second time, Louis was able to knock Schmeling out in the first round.
The movie should cover the fact that Max Schmeling was a stand-up guy. In fact, he saved two Jewish children's lives by hiding them in his apartment when Nazis began rounding up Jews in Berlin. Schmeling would later go on to become the first man to introduce Coca-Cola into Germany; he opened a bottling plant for Coca-Cola in Germany and became a very wealthy man after he retired from boxing.
Schmeling and Louis became good friends; Schmeling helped Louis through financial difficulties later in their lives. Schmeling financed and was a pallbearer for Louis's funeral.
Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh
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Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh are the greatest team in beach volleyball history. Since teaming up in 2001, the duo has dominated in beach volleyball tournaments.
They are three-time Beach Volleyball World Champions and have won two Olympic gold medals. The first medal came in 2004 in Athens, Greece, and the second came in 2008 in Beijing, China.
Wilt Chamberlain's 100 Point Game
Wilt Chamberlain set several records in the 1961-1962 season which have never been threatened. He averaged 50.4 points and 27.5 rebounds a game. When the season ended, Chamberlain had 4,029 points and 2,052 rebounds. Chamberlain is still the only man to score 4,000 points in a season. The only other person to come close to this feat is Michael Jordan, who scored 3,041 points in the 1986-1987 season.
Chamberlain was, without a doubt, an unstoppable force throughout the season, and a game held on March 2, 1962 epitomized Chamberlain's success. Chamberlain's Philadelphia Warriors came out on top of the New York Kicks. The score was 169-147, and 100 of the Warriors' points were scored by Wilt Chamberlain.
According to some stories, the final 46 seconds of the game weren't even played because the crowd went on to the court to celebrate Chamberlain's feat. Fifty years later, Chamberlain still remains the only player to score 100 points in one game.
2004 Boston Red Sox
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This movie needs to cover the fact the the 2004 Red Sox were the most unlikeliest of teams to break the Curse of Bambino. The team consisted of some of the quirkiest and most unorthodox players in baseball, but they went on to make history.
The Sox also made one of the biggest comebacks in sports history against their most hated rivals the New York Yankees in the playoffs, when they were down three games to zero.
Kerri Strug launched herself into sports history when she completed two vaults, one of which was on an injured ankle, to help the United States Olympic Women's Gymnastics team to win the gold medal.
If it had not been for Strug's clutch performance, the U.S. may not have won the gold medal in 1996.
The O.J. Simpson Trial
The O.J. Simpson trial was given more media coverage then the Bosnian War and the Oklahoma City Bombings combined. An estimated 100 million people watched the verdict on TV. The Los Angeles Times featured the trial on their front page for about 300 days following the murders.
If anything, a movie about the O.J. Simpson trial should show how the American public eats up controversy and how the media is more than willing to sensationalize stories to gain viewers. During the the trial, news stations became entertainment stations in order to gain viewers.
The movie needs to remind us that after all of the controversy and unnecessary media coverage, two people were dead and their murderer has still not been brought to justice.
The Steroid Era
Bonds on deck before breaking Hank Aaron's home run record.
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When a player's strike caused the 1994 season and part of the 1995 to be cancelled, it caused even the most hardcore fan to become alienated from the sport. After play resumed, home runs unexpectedly went up, and bodies started to get bigger. As home runs increased, so did fan interest.
The Era reached its peak during the 1998 season when Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa became locked in a race to break Roger Maris' single-season home run record. They both broke it, but McGwire did it first. Sosa finished the '98 season with 66 home runs, and McGwire finished the year with 70 home runs. Not only was Maris' record was broken, it was demolished. The next year they passed Maris again, but McGwire's 1998 record stayed intact.
People expected McGwire's record would never be broken in their lifetimes. But it took only three years for that to happen. Barry Bonds hit 73 home run in 2001, but by that time people were starting to smell something fishy. Six years later he broke Hank Aaron's career home run record. People were suspecting players were using steroids but had no evidence other than ridiculously large men and a ton of home runs.
That all changed in 2005 when Jose Canseco released his book entitled Juiced. In the book he revealed the he, Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa, Rafael Palmeiro, and several others used steroids. After the book was released, Congress held a hearing on the matter. Palmeiro denied that he used steroids to Congress. A few days later it was revealed Palmeiro had tested positive for performance enhancing drugs.
In a way, the Steroid Era was a big conspiracy. Players wanted to improve their performance and win a big contract when they became free agents. They spread their knowledge of PEDs to others, and eventually drug use became a pandemic in baseball. Owners and other team officials let this go as well, due to the increased ticket sales that were desperately needed after the strike.
If a movie is made about this subject, it should highlight that the main motivator for the perpetrators of this era was fame and money.
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Do you agree or disagree with any of these suggestions? Did I miss anything? Leave your comments down at the bottom of the page.