Will Ferrell is reportedly in talks to star in a biopic about an NFL legend.
Deadline reports that the “Saturday Night Live” alum is in discussions to portray John Madden in “Madden”, a feature from MGM/Amazon Studios to be directed by David O. Russell (“Amsterdam”, “Silver Linings Playbook”).
According to the report, the project has been in the works for some time, with Russell in the midst of a script rewrite until the WGA strike placed the project on hold.
“A Prime Video Sports Original, ‘Madden’ tells the story of one of the larger-than-life personalities to grace an NFL sideline,” notes Deadline.
The film traces Madden’s career as a Super Bowl-winning coach who ultimately began being crushed by the stress of the job he loved, propelling him into a second act as a TV football commentator that made him even more famous than he’d ever been as a coach.
Madden would go on to host “SNL”, become a commercial pitchman for such products as Miller Lite and Tinactin, and, most successfully, the brand figurehead on a series of video games that continue to be among the top sellers in the industry.
“He redefined the notion of the football broadcaster with an outsized personality that led to a big endorsement career for Lite Beer from Miller, Tinactin and other products. Although he’d never played a video game in his life, Madden helped changed the videogame landscape when he became the figurehead for Madden NFL, a perennial top seller that this fall gets its 24th incarnation through Electronic Arts.
Madden retired from broadcasting in 2009; he died in December 2021 at age 85.