Former football hard man Vinnie Jones is in line to play former Leicester City boss Nigel Pearson in the much-anticipated film about Jamie Vardy’s life, according to the screenwriter Adrian Butchart.
Speaking to Newsweek, Butchart approached Jones after he finished top of a poll ran in the Leicester Mercury newspaper about who the fans would want to play Pearson.
He explained: “That came about because the Leicester Mercury ran a poll of who people wanted to see as playing Nigel Pearson.The choices were Vinnie, Jason Statham or Ray Stevenson.
“And 74 percent of them voted for Vinnie. So, we got in touch with him and said, ‘This has happened, what do you think?’ He wrote back and said, ‘Cool, I’m in.’
“I think we would all love to see him [in the film]. This film belongs to the people of Leicester as much as anyone, so I would love to make their wishes come true.”
Butchart, of Knightsbridge films who were behind the first two GOAL! films explained his desire to make a movie about Vardy instead of some more accomplished names.
He told Newsweek: “People said why not make a movie about Ronaldo or Messi or one of these other guys who are more famous.
“My response was always that it is less interesting to watch a movie about some guy that’s picked up by a football academy at nine years old and spends a life eating skinless chicken breasts and going to bed at 9pm, compared to Jamie who has had an exciting, interesting, diverse, sometimes controversial, but fun life, which will light up the screen. That is what drew me to Jamie.”
With filming to start around October, a release date target of summer 2017 has been set and as for who will be the leading man? Butchart says that will be cast when a director is appointed.
Loaded sports writer Pearse Corcoran has covered news, sport and entertainment for several national newspapers and radio stations in Ireland. Follow him on Twitter at @PearseCorcoran