Tagged: Matt Damon

The Rain Stopped And I Headed For The Movies

Finally, a break in the downpours. I actually had to blink when I looked out my window and saw that it wasn’t raining – and that, in fact, the sun was trying to come out. Sun. Yes, sun. After days and days of cabin fever, I bolted for the multiplex having read the great reviews for “True Grit” this morning. The movie didn’t disappoint. Here’s the trailer.
I love westerns and I love most of the Coen brothers’ movies, so this was a match made in heaven. I don’t remember the original with John Wayne and am glad I don’t. The Coen brothers’ version is faithful to the novel, complete with the book’s dialogue, and the cinematography is as gorgeous as a painting. Jeff Bridges is his usual great self and the young girl who plays Mattie is terrific. But it’s Matt Damon whose performance knocked me over; he’s a Texas Ranger (no, not the baseball kind) who takes himself very seriously. He makes the character both funny and compelling. 
Is the report of the Yankees’ interest in Johnny Damon funny or compelling – or both? I did a post here the other day about the return of Vizcaino. I didn’t much like that idea and I have no particular enthusiasm for a possible second act in pinstripes for Damon. Sure, I enjoyed having him the first time around and was sorry to see him sign with Detroit. And if he’s willing to be a bench player (which I doubt), I’d be happy to have him come up with men on base and slap a homer into Damon’s Deck. But can he pitch? Because that’s what we need: a starting pitcher.

A Yankees Scandal Comes To The Big Screen

I couldn’t resist posting this item from Nikki Finke’s “Deadline Hollywood” column today. It’s probably more movie insider stuff than anyone here cares about, but the gist of the story is….Well, I’ll let the article tell the tale.

Warner Bros Finally Going Ahead with Shocking Film About Yankees Sex Scandal

By MIKE FLEMING | Category: Uncategorized | Thursday February 18, 2010 @ 3:34pm

EXCLUSIVE — Thursday 3:34 PM: The Trade, a film that tells the true tale of two New York Yankees pitchers who caused a national scandal by swapping wives in the sexually-free 1970s, has finally hit the big leagues.

Ben Affleck has become attached to direct and potentially star in the Warner Bros film. Teammates Fritz Peterson and Mike Kekich stunned the country when they disclosed in spring training 1973 that they were trading wives. Peterson had fallen in love with Susanne Kekich and his teammate fell in love with Marilyn Peterson. Fritz and Susanne remain a couple till this day, while Mike and Marilyn drifted apart.

Affleck and his former Live Planet partners Matt Damon and Sean Bailey have long been intrigued with the project, with Affleck eyeing the role of Peterson and Damon the role of Kekich.

Why has The Trade suddenly become such a hot property? I’m told a lot of it is the screenwriting work of Dave Mandel, best known for Seinfeld and  Curb Your Enthusiasm. Mandel agreed to write the project years ago, but it got stalled over life rights and other issues. By the time things were clear, Mandel was a well-paid writer in high demand. He agreed to write the script at the original contracted (bargain) price, with the understanding he would get to it when he could.

He proved worth the wait, turning in a screenplay that has the feel of a Hal Ashby movie. It made the 2009 Black List.

Though Sean Bailey was the project’s prime mover, he had to leave behind The Trade when he became Disney president of production. Warners will assign producers, a task that might well go to Affleck and Damon, who are bringing their MRC producing deal to the studio. Affleck’s Dazed and Confused director, Richard Linklater, recently expressed interest in directing, but now I’m told Affleck wants to work with Mandel on a rewrite, with the intention of helming it himself and possibly playing Peterson. Affleck, who made a strong first impression as a writer/director on Gone Baby Gone, recently completed the Warners film The Town, co-writing and directing the film, and starring with Jon Hamm and Blake Lively.

For a Yankees fan like myself, it would be worth it just to see Affleck, and possibly Damon, forced to wear the Yankees pinstripes. That has always been considered a potential obstacle for two die-hard Boston Red Sox fans and renowned Yankees haters.

I’m actually old enough to remember Fritz Peterson and Mike Kekich.


And I can tell you that when they swapped wives, it made headlines around the world. (I can only imagine what the tabloids would do with the scandal now.) Will I go see the movie? You bet. A movie about the Yankees is a no-brainer. In the meantime, is there a Red Sox scandal I can write a film about?