NFL Backs 'Crash' Style Football Drama 'Week 14' from Ron Shelton
Writer/director Ron Shelton is best known for his impressive scripts and direction on sports movie classics like White Men Can't Jump, Tin Cup, and Bull Durham. Good news, football fans: you now have something to be excited about aside from the start of the upcoming football season. Variety reports that Shelton has written a Crash style ensemble script called Week 14 that explores the final three weeks of a regular NFL season through the eyes of fictional players, coaches, and their spouses. Plus, it actually secured the rare approval of the NFL, which means real teams and logos will be used in the movie. More below!
If this sounds too good to be true, that's because it is. The NFL has demanded a PG-13 rating in order to preserve their family-friendly reputation, which will make it tough to accurately portray what really happens on the field. If you've ever played a sport in your life, you know the high-pressure situations make people swear left and right and say things that they would never say off the field of combat, so neutering the project from the start isn't exactly a great sign. But Shelton's credits speak for themselves, and director Tony Krantz, who executive produced Aaron Sorkin's "Sports Night," is also intimately familiar with the game. So there's reason to stay optimistic about this for now.
It will be kind of cool to see the real professional sports teams up on the big screen without having to invent fake teams like in The Last Boy Scout or Any Given Sunday, Oliver Stone's football film which many hold as the best in the genre. Will Week 14 be able to compete with Stone's incisive look into the industry, given its restrictions from the start? Will this end up being a family-friendly Disney style movie? The film is being pitched to studios, so perhaps seeing which one locks it down will give us a better idea of the direction.