It’s no surprise that the ballad of American folk hero/publically outed liar Lance Armstrong is set to hit theaters (bike into theaters?) by way of big screen adaptation, but it is striking just how many Armstrong-centric projects are taking wing (wheel?) these days.
As of now, there are three films in the works (spokes? Fine, I’ll stop) that revolve around Armstrong – a Bradley Cooper-starring Warner Bros. feature scripted by Scott Z. Burns and set to be directed by Jay Roach (this one, titled Red Blooded American, includes the life rights to Armstrong’s former teammate Tyler Hamilton); a Paramount Pictures and Bad Robot picture based on Juliet Macur’s book “Cycle of Lies: The Fall of Lance Armstrong;” and a film from director Stephen Frears based on the book “Seven Deadly Sins: My Pursuit of Lance Armstrong.” It’s the Frears project that’s getting a big boost today, as Deadline Hollywood confirms that Ben Foster – long rumored for the starring role as Armstrong – is now set for the lead role. It should prove to be a meaty, high profile part for the very talented actor.
Foster has been rumored for the role since July, so the news doesn’t shock – but it does come with lots of interesting details regarding other casting picks. Chris O’Dowd is also on board, and he’ll play journalist David Walsh (whose book the film is based on). Other co-stars will include French filmmaker and actor Guillaume Canet and “Breaking Bad” star Jesse Plemons (who played Todd on AMC’s critical darling).
The film will reportedly follow “Armstrong’s rise through the 1990s and early 2000s, his battle with cancer and his dominance of pro cycling.” The inclusion of Walsh as a character makes sense, as the project will also follow the journalist “who was at first charmed by Armstrong, but ultimately became an integral figure in exposing the doping rife within the sport.”
The film is set to start shooting later this week, so it seems like it may actually have the jump on the Armstrong film race. Of course, all the features have already lost out to Alex Gibney’s documentary, The Armstrong Lie, which has already played to acclaim on the festival circuit. Think Foster can pull it off? Let us know below.
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