Tuesdays With John Scott? It turns out the rumored movie on unlikely NHL All-Star Game participant and MVP John Scott is indeed happening “fairly quickly,” and, as Deadline’s Mike Fleming Jr. reports, there’s a familiar sports name writing the script: Mitch Albom.
Mandalay Sports Media has acquired the feature life rights to tell the story of John Scott, a journeyman player who: was voted into this year’s NHL All-Star Game as a captain through an Internet write-in campaign, got traded and then demoted to the minors by a pissed-off NHL because he wouldn’t withdraw and wound up the game’s MVP before heading back to the minors in Newfoundland. It’s so far-fetched that a screenwriter couldn’t have invented it. Mitch Albom, the longtime Detroit Free Press sportswriter and author of books that include Tuesdays With Morrie and The Five People You Meet In Heaven, has signed to write the script for a film that will be produced by MSM’s Mike Tollin and Jon Weinbach, with Albom exec producing.
Scott’s story is a long way from books like Tuesdays With Morrie and The Five People You Meet In Heaven, but Albom’s actually quite qualified to write this. In fact, he co-wrote the legendary Warren Zevon song about a hockey enforcer, “Hit Somebody”:
That song itself has been the long-awaited subject of a Kevin Smith movie, which was rumored to be turning into a TV series and then back to a movie, but hasn’t produced any news in some time. Thus, it’s quite possible that the John Scott story makes it to theaters before Hit Somebody does, if it ever does. That song shows Albom has some experience with this kind of story, though, as does his January Detroit Free Press column on Scott. In fact, the comments Scott gave to Albom then really sum this story up:
“I’m well aware that I should not be at the All-Star Game based on talent,” he said. “This is gonna be a one-time thing. I guarantee next year they’re gonna change the rules. But I talked to a lot of former tough guys, and they said, ‘You know what? Just go.’ We’re kind of a dying breed. So it’s paying homage to them. And it might be fun for fans to see what someone who isn’t a 50-goal scorer can do.”
Fans indeed did see that, with Scott’s two goals and general fun making his inclusion the highlight of the weekend for many (and boosting NHL merchandise sales and TV ratings in the process). Now, we get to see that story turned into a movie. That may or may not work out well, but it’s notable that there are good sports names attached in Mike Tollin (Coach Carter, The Bronx Is Burning, Small Potatoes: Who Killed The USFL?, other 30 for 30s) and Jon Weinbach (The Other Dream Team, Straight Outta L.A.). Having Albom write the script may work out well, too. Just as long as he doesn’t put Jason Richardson in the crowd…