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IMG and Mandalay Sports Media are partnering on a slate of sport-centric feature films.
The WME-owned management company and the sports media outfit are looking to develop, finance and produce at least 10 feature films over the next three to five years, with plans to distribute via traditional theatrical release and streaming platforms.
The partnership is kicking off with an adaptation of Chad Harbach’s best-selling novel The Art of Fielding, which follows a shortstop at a small liberal arts college on Lake Michigan, whose renowned fielding skills begin to deteriorate after an on-field accident.
Craig Johnson (Wilson, The Skeleton Twins) will direct from a script by Tripper Clancy. Mandalay co-chairman Mike Tollin, whose credits include Varsity Blues, Coach Carter and Radio, will produce alongside Carl Hampe, Tom Heller and Frank Hall Green. Will Staeger and Mike Antinoro will executive produce for IMG Films, along with Bill Holderman.
“The Art of Fielding is one of my all-time favorite books, and I couldn’t be more thrilled to be making this film with our partners at IMG. We’re thrilled to have financing in place for the slate so we can choose projects based on what we love, rather than what we think we can sell,” said Tollin.
Added Staeger: “The depth of our creative resources and relationships across the IMG and MSM partnership will allow us to identify and tell iconic stories that will entertain a broad audience worldwide.”
IMG’s feature credits include the ALS documentary Gleason and Michael Moore’s latest feature, Where to Invade Next, and is currently working on a number of television projects, including Fox’s Showtime at the Apollo. Mandalay will next release the Naomi Watts-starrer Chuck and is currently in production on two project for ESPN’s 30 for 30 franchise.
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