[dropcap]T[/dropcap]he worlds of football and film are set to collide once more, with the movie F2014 (working title) which will star Tim Roth as FIFA President Sepp Blatter.
Quentin Tarantino’s pet has been chosen to play the gaff-prone Swiss, who steps down from his post in 2015, to the surprise of many. Blatter himself said of the Pulp Fiction star: “I was very eager to meet him, and I have just realised that really we have something in common.” All well and good, but will the movie be Premier League or Evo-Stik Division?
The problem lies in the fact that the film’s main purpose is to commemorate FIFA itself, with the release due to coincide with the organisation celebrating its 110th anniversary next year, not to mention the world cup in Brazil. If the picture does turn out to be a massive pat on the back for FIFA, it’s highly unlikely there’ll be anything in the way of scandal, corruption or controversy. It would then simply be ‘a biopic on the administration of football’, as one site puts it, which is hardly a storyline that captures the imagination.
Football in film is also a distinctly mixed bag, as for every Gregory’s Girl there’s an Escape to Victory, but when it comes to biopics the genre seems to fare quite well. If you think of films such as The Damned United and Best, the idea instantly sounds more appealing, but again, it’s extremely doubtful that F2014 will be anything like as gritty.
But with a distinctly French flavour to proceedings, maybe a touch of Gallic flair will come to its rescue. Leuviah and Thelma films are the two companies producing, with Gerard Depardieu co-starring as Jules Ruimet, one of FIFA’s founders, and the man the original world cup trophy was named after. Director Frederic Auburtin also hails from France.
If, as anticipated, the release date of F2014 is to tie-in with the 110th birthday celebrations, it should be with us on May 21st next year.