Out of all the video game to movie adaptations we’ve been seeing as of late, this has got to be one of the weirdest. In fact, if we weren’t in the middle of December, I would probably assume this was an early April Fool’s joke. According to The Wrap, EA is planning a movie based on their long running, wildly successful Madden football game franchise. While that might not be so weird in itself, the premise is not about an underdog football team that wins a championship thanks to the coaching of John Madden. Instead, it will be a comedy about the “Madden Curse”, the so-called jinx that brings misfortune to the athlete who adorns the cover of each year’s game.
Don’t believe in the curse? Check out this complete list of Madden cover athletes and the accidents that have befallen them:
- 1999: Garrison Hearst — Broke his fibula in the playoffs and missed the next two seasons
- 2000: Barry Sanders and Dorsey Levens — Sanders retired before the season started and Levens injured his knee
- 2001: Eddie George — Plagued by toe and ankle injuries
- 2002: Dante Culpepper — Season-ending knee injury
- 2003: Marshall Faulk — Ankle injury
- 2004: Michael Vick — Broke his leg one day after the game hit stores
- 2005: Ray Lewis — Torn hamstring
- 2006: Donovan McNabb — Season-ending surgery to repair a sports hernia
- 2007: Shaun Alexander — Broken foot
- 2008: Vince Young — Quad injury followed by a knee injury
- 2009: Brett Favre — Torn bicep tendon requiring season-ending MRI surgery
- 2010: Larry Fitzgerald and Troy Polamalu — Rib injury and sprained MCL / torn PCL
- 2011: Drew Bees — ???
Athletes are a pretty superstitious lot as it is, so you can understand why some might be more than a little wary of the game’s reputation. Nonetheless, this movie is apparently real, and based on the popularity of the games, I could actually see it doing well. The story will revolve around “a former Madden video game champion who is forced out of retirement just as he finds himself on the corner of the game’s cover — and subject to the curse.” Pat O’Brien, VP of EA Entertainment, is producing the film, while a director has yet to be named. Personally, I think there is only one obvious choice: John Madden, director of Shakespeare in Love and Killshot!