"We're Doing The Movie": Peter Berg & Connie Britton Say 'Friday Night Lights' Film Is A Go

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by Kevin Jagernauth
May 3, 2012 6:42 PM
18 Comments
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Last summer fans of Texas football, and more specifically, the series "Friday Night Lights," got some hope that there was more to come. Peter Berg revealed that he wanted to get a feature film off the ground centered on Kyle Chandler and Connie Britton picking up where the final episode of the show left off, and that work was happening to start getting it rolling. And then, there was pretty much radio silence on it, but now it seems it's becoming more of a reality.

Details recently chatted with both Berg and Britton, and though they remained cagey at first, the director laid it on the line: "We're doing the movie." And moreover, it seems a script and story is already being laid out as Britton recounts: "So, I had a meeting at [executive producer/writer] Jason Katims' office. And we were talking about something else and I said, 'Forget about all that. Is this movie going to happen?' I was sitting on his couch, and he's like, 'Look behind you.' And I look behind me and it's a wall with a big, huge corkboard on it with all these 3x5 cards. That's what these writers do, they do the whole story on 3x5 cards. He's like, That's the movie.' "

Earlier this year, Berg revealed that the movie would be inspired by the true story of Mike Leach, the Texas Tech coach who was wrongfully accused of abusing a player, and got fired from his position. "I put Leach in a little cameo in 'Friday Night Lights' and I started to become friends with him, and then he got fired. I really studied that entire situation — his getting fired and the accusations made against him by Adam James, and the pressure that his father, Craig James, put on Leach, using his ESPN bully pulpit," Berg explained about what was compelling about the tale. "Craig James is a fucking scumbag, helicopter dad—and everything wrong with the culture I observed in Texas. Mike Leach never put that kid in a closet. The kid admitted it. It was a total lie. Now Mike Leach has the Washington State University job and he's got carte blanche. It's a great comeback story."

Now of course, until there is a greenlight or this is actually cameras rolling, we'll keep the enthusiasm down a notch, but Universal, who have the rights, may have been noticing what Berg and 'FNL' star Taylor Kitsch have been experiencing during recent press rounds. "Here's the crazy thing—I've been traveling around the world for 'Battleship.' And Taylor Kitsch has been traveling around the world for 'John Carter.' I mean, literally around the world. London, Paris, Germany, Spain, Moscow, Tokyo, Korea, Mexico City, Australia. For real. All those places. Everywhere we go we're talking about 'Battleship' and 'John Carter,' but all they want to talk about is the Friday Night Lights movie. Everywhere. Even in fucking Korea! Taylor is like, 'It's just fucking ridiculous,' " Berg explained.

So clearly Britton is in, but what about Chandler? "We'll get him," Berg confidently stated. So are we getting close to the goal line here? Sure seems like it.

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18 Comments

  • Melwoofe | September 16, 2012 2:49 PMReply

    Fantastic news. I never, ever thought I would be attracted to this show - as a former Texan (sorry but I left many, many years ago to live in the UK) I know this state so well and what forms the obsession with football etc! However, it was my Brit son that told me about this series. It is brilliant! It is sensitive (not usually associated with Texas football!) and semi-realistic (there is certainly the kind heart there but not a trail that football crazy small towns usually have. I adore this because of its humanity and goodness (hope I have not insulted those good Christians who think they have a monopoly on "good". Thank you.

  • olhussy | July 18, 2012 8:58 AMReply

    This is wonderful news, I have missed this show so much, NBC wonder why their prime time ratings are like they are? I'll tell you because they don't have a fucking clue to what viewers want, just like Frons over at ABC, he killed the soap OLTL and look at the ratings. The viewers boycotted the Network and are still doing it. I know I'm one of them. I hope you make a series of FNL movies like the Twilight saga.... I bet you'll make millions, then who will be laughing all the way to the bank...... Too Bad NBC, Matt Lauer can't do it all! I can't wait to see Kyle Chandler and Taylor Kitsch again....

  • Nancy | May 25, 2012 11:50 AMReply

    This is GREAT news, if it's done in the same manner as the series: subtle, ensemble cast... and set in Dillon! A FNL movie simply MUST be set in Dillon, complete with the Riggins brothers, Buddy Garrity, Grandma Saracen, etc... Tammy's new job turned out to be too much, she had no work-life balance, they realize their home is in Dillon, so Coach is hired to coach Superteam. That should be the starting point of the movie.

  • Jon | May 7, 2012 11:22 AMReply

    Interestingly, the guy who wrote the book now thinks football should be banned. Theres very few successful movies immediately following the cancelation of a tv show. This wont be one of them.

  • Matt | May 7, 2012 11:00 PM

    The first time Berg made FNL into a film it opened #1 at the box office.

  • Sam Mathers | May 4, 2012 5:06 AMReply

    The 2004 movie was directed by berg as well and starred britton as the wife and bill bob thornton as the coach. I'm not sure how this new film would work thoubgh. Is it supposed to be like an indirect sequel?

  • Mike | May 4, 2012 4:38 PM

    Um, no, it's a continuation of the tv show? Britton just happens to also play the coach's wife on the show, theyre not the same characters.

  • Scott Harrigan | May 4, 2012 2:45 AMReply

    There was already a Friday Night Lights movie in 2004 and it was a pretty good sports drama. It was a book that was adapted into a film then a television series, now it is being adapted into another film? It seems like this would get stale, so why don't they just come up with a new idea. I have never seen the show, but I was thoroughly satisfied with the film.

    http://www.videodetective.com/movies/friday-night-lights/999299

  • Dn | May 5, 2012 4:19 PM

    I would tend to belive you, but I think as long as they put Eric and Tami Taylor front and center in whatever story they tell, it won't be stale. As long as Chandler and Britton get to have some emotional money shot scenes, it'll be worth the 10bucks.

  • CJ | May 4, 2012 2:35 AMReply

    I really really hope they don't. I love FNL. The finale was the best of any tv show I've followed. I know this means I should trust these guys, but I wish they wouldn't. Walk away with the greatness you achieved. This feels like the great athlete who retired at the top of his game and then tried a comeback that could never match expectations. Every person I turn onto the show falls in love. They are going to have a long, long legacy. Please leave it at that.

  • Glass | May 4, 2012 12:44 AMReply

    The MOVIE based on the TV SHOW based on the MOVIE based on the BOOK based on the TRUE STORY... I'm not mad at it, but you got to admit the movie industry's starting to look like that snake eating it's own tail.

  • cirkusfolk | May 3, 2012 9:55 PMReply

    Wait, wasn't this already a movie before a tv show?

  • hmmm | May 3, 2012 8:01 PMReply

    If Tim Riggins isn't in for a significant portion of the movie; they have lost me and probably others. Taylor Kitsch wasn't sounding like he was on board. ...waiting to hear...

  • Matt | May 7, 2012 11:01 PM

    Kitsch will be there. Guaranteed

  • art vandelay | May 3, 2012 7:08 PMReply

    clear eyes,full hearts,if this movie is made we all lose

  • Stephen B | May 3, 2012 7:00 PMReply

    Excited about this. Forget the big budget Michael Bay crap, Berg, you should be making smaller, human stories like this.

  • Nate | May 3, 2012 6:58 PMReply

    Wait... So, someone is going to accuse Coach Taylor of abuse?

  • Sean | May 3, 2012 6:51 PMReply

    Great.

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