Pawn Sacrifice, the Bobby Fischer film that seems to have been taking longer to get going than the average game of chess, finally is starting filming next month in Montreal, and it has added two quality new members to its cast: Peter Sarsgaard and Liev Schreiber.
Toby Maguire is the one who has been working on getting this going for some time now, and he’s set to star as Fischer. At one point David Fincher was supposed to direct, but now Ed Zwick is set to take the helm, directing off a script by Stephen Knight. In addition to starring in the film Maguire is also producing under his Material Pictures banner.
Bobby Fischer is certainly the most famous of all American chess masters. In fact, I’d bet he’s the only one the majority of Americans can name. His notoriety is well-deserved, as he was the youngest grand master ever in the history of chess. He became the first American to reach the finals in 1972, where he had a showdown with a Soviet master by the name of Boris Spassky.
Schrieber will be playing Spassky and it looks like Sarsgaard will be playing a priest whom Fischer was close with during that time. Later in life, Fischer was known for making anti-American and anti-Semitic statements before his 2008 death at age 64.
Granted, chess isn’t the most compelling sport to watch, and it certainly isn’t the sort of game that screams high stakes movie, but a Fischer film definitely has potential. We still don’t know a ton of concrete information about the plot, but I assume a lot more of the film will be focused on Bobby away from the board, but that really isn’t different from any sports film when you get down to it. Even movie like Major League or Miracle aren’t about fielding grounders or skating. They’re about the people who play the sport, with most of the attention focused away from their sport. I expect this to take more of a Rocky path, with most of the film focused on Fischer in the time leading up to his big showdown with Spassky.
What do you think of Sarsgaard and Schreiber joining Pawn Sacrifice? Head on down to the comments section and share your thoughts with us.