Friday, August 7, 2009

There will never be another Barry Pepper

It's a shame that there haven't been very many good sports biopics made recently. Especially since the ones I've liked have been from more obscure sports, such as Cinderella Man and Seabiscuit. The last good one about an athlete in a major sport that I can think of is Billy Crystal's 61*. One of the great things about that movie, as Krehbiel rightly put it, is that Barry Pepper was born to play Roger Maris. To me, the most exciting part of a biopic is seeing who will be playing the featured figure. Now that gets me thinking: what are some other actors that could play an athlete or coach in a film? Here's a list of five guys who were either born to play, might decently portray, or just look eerily similar to a particular sports figure. 

1. Sean William Scott as Andy Roddick


He's got the frat boy mentality, athletic physique, and strikingly similar facial features. This combo is hard to pass up. 

2. David Paymer as Jeff Van Gundy


It's much more rewarding to find a good match for sports figures who are different or odd-looking. Add the fact that Paymer already played a coach in The Sixth Man, and you have a stellar movie in the making. Plus, who doesn't want to see a movie about Jeff Van Gundy. The Alonzo Mourning incident would be a great turning point in the film.

3. Ron Jeremy as Stan Van Gundy

Nothing more needs to be said. 

4. Kyle Chandler as John Stockton


He would have to lose 30 pounds and begin filming immediately. If that didn't work out, he could gain 60 pounds and play Alec Baldwin instead. 

5. Denzel Washington as Magic Johnson


Bust out your ball sneakers from He Got Game, Denzel! They've both got the million dollar smile and trick photography can take care of the height disparity. Plus, Denzel would love to play this role (unless a role for Jackie Robinson came up first). 


  1. Check out a picture of Danny Granger ... Denzel could totally pull that off.

  2. Or what about Bill Bellamy doing the Luther Head story????

  3. Bellamy/Head is a great one. Plus it would be a sweet story, if it focused mainly on his experiences at the U of I. Chris Cooper could play Bruce Weber, and Rob Brown (Finding Forrester) could play Aaron Spears.

  4. Also Martin Lawrence could play Luther's estranged father and provide the comic relief.


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