We generally lament the lack of big time Hollywood-produced soccer movies around these parts. The KCKRS list of Top Ten Football Films included a preponderance of non-Hollywood films because the big studios don’t do football. It would be nice to see Hollywood give soccer, and not just the AYSO oranges-at-halftime kind, a bit of a run. Does that mean we should be excited about John Cusack and Johnny Knoxville making a comedy set in Rio that involves soccer? Uh…
The as yet un-filmed comedy is titled “Carnaval” (or Carnival! according to the IMDB page) and stars John Cusack as a “sports scout” who must travel to Rio to woo the best soccer player in the world so he can take over some agency (reasoning this out, it sounds like Cusack plays an agent, not a scout, but such are movie rumor website synopses). Knoxville plays his best friend who tags along and (naturally) sleeps with the girlfriend of the soccer star. From here we can assume that hilarity is meant to ensue. It’s like a soccer version of Jerry Maguire, set in Brazil, with an annoying best friend and no preachy message about treating people right. Also, no bespectacled kids. So not really like Jerry Maguire at all.
Did I mention that all of this happens during Carnaval? Hence the title.
As potentially awful as this sounds, there’s at least a reasonable chance that it could be funny. Also, we can’t really get too picky when it comes to soccer in movies. There are a few ways to look at Carnaval as a soccer fan:
- As a movie with soccer playing a pivotal role, showing that Hollywood isn’t discriminating against the sport when marketing to an American audience, and hence a positive sign.
- It looks like soccer is just an excuse to get the protagonist to Rio, in which case screw Hollywood, soccer deserves better.
- What the hell? Johnny Knoxville? Was Rob Schneider not available?
Let’s cross our fingers on this one, shall we?
Source: Hollywood Reporter