It’s perhaps the least surprising news to come out this week – even less surprising than the fact that Lance Armstrong was doping – but here it is: Paramount and Bad Robot are turning the Lance Armstrong doping scandal into a movie.
That’s right. The studios have secured right to Juliet Marcur’s biography of Armstrong, Cycle of Lies: The Fall of Lance Armstrong (how’s THAT for a clever title?!), which is scheduled to come out in June 2013. The film, like the book, sounds like it will follow the decline of one of sports best-loved, and now most excoriated, figures. We all know how Hollywood loves those decline and fall narratives. Just look at Charlie Sheen.
Armstrong has been a subject for cinematic speculation for awhile now. Frank Marshall and Gary Ross were reportedly trying to get a movie going starring Jake Gyllenhaal, but those plans were scrapped as the doping allegations gained legitimacy. Now, what with Armstrong’s confessional to Oprah the other day, it looks like any film about Lance Armstrong will have to focus on those less than nice aspects of his career. Like the whole cheating and bullying others and possibly committing perjury thing. There’s that.
No word yet on directors, writers or stars – who can play Armstrong, I wonder? – but it has been confirmed that Bad Robot’s Bryan Burk will produce.
It seems to me that this whole thing is getting old fast. While it’s not surprising that Hollywood would want to pick up on a famous athlete’s fall from grace – made all the worse because of his trajectory in a remarkable recovery from cancer to winning the Tour de France – isn’t the real story just too cynical? Few are surprised by Armstrong’s fall, especially after the past few years, but do we really need to repeat it for our viewing pleasure? What purpose will that serve? Or is it just good entertainment? If it does get made, I hope it’s called Lie Strong, because that’s a ridiculous title.
What do you think? Will the Lance Armstrong scandal make a good movie or is it time to move on to other things? Let us know in the comments below.