Thursday, November 6, 2014

That Wayzata Girls Movie......

Disney has released the first trailer for McFarland, USA. The film follows coach Jim Lee (Kevin Costner), who transformed a team of unlikely cross-country runners into state champions back in 1987, and this initial footage indicates that the movie aims to strike the delicate balance between heartwarming melodrama and a lighthearted fish-out-of-water story.

I'm a bit astonished that a feature film about cross country is finding its way to the silver screen. And it gave me pause as a little less than a year ago, a local parent had touted the idea of doing a feature film on the 2013 Wayzata girls cross country team that stunned the high school cross country pundits by winning a national championship in Portland, OR.

Wayzata High School - Girls 2013 Nike National Champions - Photo Montage from Brian Maas on Vimeo.

I shot it down. "Who would watch a movie about cross country?", I had asked. Well, Disney for one. Of course, that begs the question, which actor would play each pivotal role in a movie on the Wayzata Seven? Let's take a look.

The Coaches

Dave Emmans, head coach (Benedict Cumberbatch)

Addy Hallen, assistant coach (Emily Blunt)

The Runners

McKenna Evans (Scarlett Johanssen)

Mary Franke (Emma Watson)

Anna French (Natalie Portman)

Annika Halverson (Reese Witherspoon)

Michaela Keller-Miller (Jennifer Lawrence)

Annika Lerdall (Anne Hathaway)

Alayna Sonnesyn (Keira Knightly)

So, there you have it. The movie won't be cheap to make because of the actor salaries, but it is bound to make somewhere in the range of $160-$170 million in US domestic sales in the first weekend alone. I think it worth the risk. Of course, it will need a producer/director. And who else to bring this film to the silver screen but the film writer himself, Thomas Franke. Afterall, it Franke who first had the idea. And since he is a parent, and obviously would have a minor role in the film, we need to cast his part also.

Tom Franke (Chris Hemsworth)

And there you have it, the first production meeting for the Wayzata Girls Cross Country feature length movie. Funding is being worked on by selling commemorative shoe laces. 

Have your own suggestion for the lead roles? Leave a comment. 

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