John Grisham's Playing for Pizza Being Adapted

May 20, 2008
Source: Hollywood Reporter

Playing for Pizza

Another one of John Grisham's many novels is being adapted, and this time it's Playing for Pizza, one his few non-legal books. The bestseller first hit bookshelves late last year and is being adapted by Phoenix Pictures (The Thin Red Line, Holes, Zodiac). No screenwriter has been found for the project yet, but Phoenix is looking to adapt it in a similar fashion to Zodiac and Martin Scorsese's currently in-production Shutter Island. Does Playing for Pizza have the makings to become another brilliant Grisham film?

From Third-string Cleveland Browns quarterback Rick Dockery becomes the greatest goat ever by throwing three interceptions in the closing minutes of the AFC championship game. Fleeing vengeful fans, he finds refuge in the grungiest corner of professional football, the Italian National Football League as quarterback of the inept but full-of-heart Parma Panthers. What ensues is a winsome football fable, replete with team bonding and character-building as the underdog Panthers challenge the powerhouse Bergamo Lions for a shot at the Italian Superbowl. The book is also Grisham's love letter to Italy.

I hate to compare this story to other films out there, but it really sounds a bit like Leatherheads combined with everything Italian. A football story set in Italy? Has anyone read this and can anyone confirm that it actually could be good? Is there more football or more story to this book? Don't forget that just because John Grisham wrote the novel, that means it will be good. Need I remind you of the travesty Christmas with the Kranks? Remarkably that was adapted from Grisham's Skipping Christmas.

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I actually read this book recently and enjoyed it. There is a good amount of football but they do have their story in between of the games.

Stephen on May 20, 2008


It is a really great fun story, maybe you should actually pick up a book sometime's a pretty short read

Jessica on May 20, 2008


italy has a football league? with phoenix pictures adapting it certainly seems like something to check out, holes and thin red line are great movies

harrison on May 20, 2008


i never saw leather heads, nor will i, but this reminded me more of.......crap was the name of that movie with keanu reeves the dadadada theeeeeee the REPLACEMENTS THATS IT

Jont on May 28, 2008


This book was a delight to read. Grisham's stylish writing places you smack dab in the middle of Parma, Italy. I can't wait to see this on the big screen. Casting the lead, Rick Dockery the quarterback will be crucial. I heard Leatherheads was big on story and small on football action. The football action is a big part of this story, so I hope it will be just as big in the movie. The screenwriter will have to sift through some exposition and make some choices on what to include. Football movies are hit and miss, but this could be for football films what Bull Durham was for baseball films. Read this book, it is basic and a quick read.

Chad on Aug 9, 2008


I just read this book and remarked to my husband that I think this could be a really fun movie! Everyone loves a movie set in Italy...well at least I sure do! I'm trying to figure out who could be cast as "Reek". My only hope is that the production company doesn't trash up a perfectly decent story. This could be a movie enjoyed by most age groups if they will leave out inappropriate language and graphic sex scenes. I'm crossing my fingers - I think it could work!

carol on Aug 11, 2008


leatherheads was a little dry, pizza's story is far better. i just read the book myself and the whole time i read it i saw the the drill sargent from full metal jacket as sam, josh duhmeal as the quarterback, and to be quite honest, artie lange as artie. i think this movie would be great. it reminded me more of ridley scott's a good year more than anything. this is not a sports movie. its a coming of age story about growth and change. it would need a visual director more than anything with an exceptional cinematographer. ok later.

jonny b on Aug 8, 2009


i need to summarize the novel... those who are really expert on this plz help meeeee... add me at

Mia qistina que on Apr 5, 2010

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