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HBO Films is poised to explore The Battle of the Sexes.
The premium cable network has tapped Elizabeth Banks and Paul Giamatti to play tennis legends Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs, respectively, in a TV movie chronicling the duo’s legendary 1973 tennis match, The Hollywood Reporter has confirmed. Sources tell THR that no deals are done.
The movie will focus on the match that became known as The Battle of the Sexes in which King, then a 29-year-old No. 2 female player in the world, defeated the 55-year-old retired Wimbledon champion.
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Proof writer David Auburn will pen the script for Playtone. The company’s Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman will exec produce. Banks and her Brownstone Productions partner Max Handelman will also exec produce.
HBO Films’ project comes as a feature film chronicling the legendary match also is in the works; Will Ferrell is attached to star in Match Maker, a comedic drama based on the ESPN the Magazine article “The Match Maker: Bobby Riggs, The Mafia and The Battle of the Sexes.”
Banks is repped by UTA and Untitled; Giamatti is with UTA and Kipperman Management.
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