A fun ensemble cast is building around Ben Affleck and Matt Damon in the as-yet untitled story of a small Oregon sports company’s bid to sign the world’s most famous sporting star.
Following the stunning 1990s success of their onscreen debut Good Will Hunting, Ben Affleck and Matt Damon have worked together periodically throughout the years, most recently in Ridley Scott’s The Last Duel, which they also co-wrote. We’ve known since April that the duo are set to resurrect their onscreen partnership once more in the as-yet-untitled Nike movie that will chart the story of how the company secured the services of basketball legend, Michael Jordan. The move would prove to be one of the shrewdest partnerships in marketing history and launched Nike Air Jordan, a brand that is still going strong today.
Ben Affleck will portray co-founder Phil Knight in the story surrounding Nike’s efforts to sign Jordan to its shoe company in the mid-’80s. Meanwhile, Damon will play ‘Sonny Vaccaro, ‘a maverick shoe salesman’ who is chasing the Jordan deal.’
More casting has been revealed, with Jason Bateman, Viola Davis, Chris Tucker Marlon Wayans, Chris Messina, Matthew Maher, Tom Papa and Julius Tennon all having been announced.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Bateman will portray Vaccaro’s boss, Davis will play Michael Jordan’s mother, Tucker will be a former basketball player and Nike executive Howard White, and Wayans will portray the college basketball legend, George Raveling. Also, Messina will play Jordan’s agent David Falk, Maher will play legendary Nike designer Peter Moore, Papa will portray the ex-Portland Trail Blazers executive Stu Inman, and Tennon will portray Jordan’s father Jame.
If you’re wondering why none of those names are playing Jordan himself, that’s because the basketball icon’s presence is set to loom over the film, but Jordan won’t appear, emphasising how out of reach he is to those trying to woo him.
Affleck will direct the film and both he and Damon will produce.
Amazon Studios, Skydance Sports and Mandalay Pictures are financing the film which has us even more excited now we’ve seen the full cast. We’ll let you know more on this one as we hear but filming is now officially underway.
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