By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist June 15, 2011 at 4:04AM
It's been a while since we've heard much on "Moneyball" and given the history behind it, it's a minor miracle it's even arriving at all. So a bit of recap, shall we?
David Frankel ("Marley & Me") was first attached to direct, then Steven Soderbergh took the reins and his version of the project had its legs kicked out from under it by Sony head Amy Pascal three days before production was going to start in May of 2009. Multiple fingers pointed at different directions of blame, but nothing became too publicly clear other than the auteur being thrown under the bus by the studio (there is still a great Vanity Fair style article waiting to be written about that whole fiasco). Five writers worked on the screenplay at one time or another (including Stan Chervin, Stephen J. Rivele and Christopher Wilkinson). Last year, Steve Zaillian (Academy Award winner for "Schindler's List," writer of David Fincher's upcoming "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo") was rehired to rewrite the Aaron Sorkin draft based on the original draft Zaillian had already written (got that?). Sorkin was then supposed to do a polish on the rewrite of his rewrite, but that never happened and was only reported as such to make everything look on the up and up, but several sources close to the project tell us that Sorkin overwrote himself to the point where no one was happy with his final draft including the always important Brad Pitt (and it's a bit of a shame as one Sorkin draft we read was funny and great).
Anyway, Bennett Miller eventually came aboard, the movie was shot and now it's coming out this fall. A dramedy of sorts, "Moneyball" centers on Billy Beane (Brad Pitt) and Paul De Podesta (Jonah Hill), the GM and assistant GM that made the 2002 Oakland A's a highly competitive Major League Baseball team (Beane took them to a AL West Division title) using a modern analytical sabermetrics system, despite having a completely budgeted, low-rent team that were initially the laughing stock of baseball early on in the season. "Entertainment Tonight" dropped a preview last night of the longer preview they'll unspool tonight (we know, deal with it) but we'll take it as it gives us our first look at the film and all told? It looks like it could be fun. The interplay between Pitt and Hill looks pretty sharp and it could be a nice twist on the standard baseball movie.
More footage will hit the entertainment program today, so yeah, you'll have to deal with more of those two irritating talking heads but Jonah Hill recently hinted that a full-blown trailer for one of his upcoming movies will premiere in front of "Green Lantern" this weekend. Could it be this? We'll have to wait and see but for now, check out the clips below. "Moneyball" hits theaters on September 23rd.