Wednesday, July 1, 2009

More on: Moneyball

The New York Times has a good article today on the collapse of the production of Moneyball, the Brad Pitt/Steven Soderbergh baseball project which I've previously written about here and here. Soderbergh is officially out as the director, as are the changes he made to the last draft of the script by Steven Zaillian, but by no means is the project back on-track. But then that's hardly the point. The article suggests that this rare last-second reversal, mostly attributed to the shaky economy (although the creative differences provide additional ammo), is likely to happen with greater frequency in coming years. Attaching a big name like Brad Pitt to a film used to be cause enough to get a movie into production, but movie executives are increasingly leery of taking chances on more artistic Moneyball seemed destined to be.

With a $57 million budget, it seemed unlikely that the film would turn a profit, especially given how difficult it is for American sport-themed movies to perform overseas. Practically speaking, it's hard to blame Sony for waking up to this reality---even if a bit late in the game to do so. If this movie does ultimately get made, it'll be a shadow of the version Soderbergh intended it to be...which might not be such a bad thing. Either way, the story behind the story is one which would easily turn a profit as a tell-all book. That's the movie I want to see made.


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