It’s official. EW has confirmed that Twentieth Century Fox is acquiring the rights and developing a big-screen adaptation of Tom Shales and James Andrew Miller’s racy, randy tell-all, ESPN: Those Guys Have All the Fun. The gossipy, doorstop-sized oral history of the 24-hour sports network – in particular, its frat house-style early years – snagged a slew of headlines when it was published back in May thanks to its tawdry tales of on-air rivalries, inter-office prostitution, and of course, Keith Olbermann’s mammoth ego. With David Fincher’s The Social Network providing a blue-print of how to adapt a start-up saga like this one and Bennett Miller’s jock-themed Moneyball hitting theaters in September, we expect big things from this one. And since it’s never too early to start thinking about casting, here are our suggestions for some of the key players.
Keith Olbermann: Long before he ballooned into the self-important voice of the Left, Olbermann was the winningly snarky cohost of SportsCenter. This one is almost too easy for anyone who saw Ben Affleck’s Olbermann impersonation on SNL.
Chris Berman: The closest thing ESPN has to a cartoon mascot, Berman is a beefy prima donna who makes every highlight clip his own forum for coining silly catchphrases. We see either John Goodman or our favorite Law & Order character actor, George Dzundza.
Dick Vitale: Speaking of catchphrases (Nothin’ but net, baby!!!) ESPN’s resident college-hoops pontificator and all-around master of throat-shredding histrionics is gonna provide some tough loafers to fill. We think Stanley Tucci could ace this one with the help of some old-age make-up.
Stephen A. Smith: Easy. Gotta be Will Smith. Just give him some grumpy pills first.
Erin Andrews: Friday Night Lights’ Connie Britton seems like a lock to play the sideline reporter/Dancing With the Stars contestant. Plus, we already know she likes football.
Craig Kilborn: We can think of only one man able to summon the necessary amount of smarmy on-air sarcasm for this role: Kilborn himself. Seriously, what else is he doing?
Now it’s your turn. Who would you cast in the ESPN movie?