2014 Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival Announces Lineup

2014 Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival Announces Lineup

For a number of years, the Tribeca Film Festival has managed to combine its appreciation for independent films with its appreciation for sports.  In a partnership with ESPN that began in 2006, Tribeca Enterprises now announces its lineup for the 2014 Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival. Serving as the premiere showcase for independent sports films, highlights of this year’s festival will include “When the Garden Was Eden” by Michael Rapaport, which relives the glory days of the New York Knicks championship teams, as well as a panel discussion with Mike Tyson and Evander Holyfield following the screening of the boxing movie “Champs.”

Check out the lineup below (synopses courtesy of Tribeca)

Gala

  • When the Garden was Eden,
    directed by Michael Rapaport. (USA) – World Premiere. Actor Michael
    Rapaport
    delivers an unabashed love note to the Knicks with this fast-moving
    tribute to the team’s glory days. Featuring interviews with Walt “Clyde”
    Frazier, Earl Monroe, Willis Reed, Bill Bradley, Phil Jackson and
    others connected to the team’s championship years,
    When the Garden was Eden is a snapshot of a colorful and volatile
    era in New York history and a testament to the breathless energy that
    defines the city and its sporting heroes.

The
following Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival titles have been announced
in their respective sections as part of the 2014 TFF film program:

  • Intramural, directed by Andrew Disney, written by Bradley Jackson.
    (USA) – World Premiere, Narrative. There comes a time in every
    fifth-year senior’s life where they must either accept the impending
    ‘real world’ of jobs, marriage, and payment plans or shirk that
    responsibility in favor of playing the most glorious intramural
    football game your school probably doesn’t really care to see. In this
    full throttle and hilarious send-up of inspirational sports movies,
    director Andrew Disney harnesses every cliché and overused trope to tell
    the greatest (and only) intramural sports movie
    of all time. Featuring an ensemble cast including Kate McKinnon, Jay
    Pharoah, Jake Lacy, Beck Bennett, and Nikki Reed.
  • Maravilla, directed and written by Juan Pablo Cadaveira. (Argentina) – International Premiere. A true
    underdog story, Maravilla follows Argentinian boxer Sergio
    ‘Maravilla’ Martinez, as he sets out to reclaim the title of
    Middleweight champion that was unfairly snatched from him in 2011 by
    Julio Chavez, Jr. Focusing on the rise of Martinez from penniless
    amateur to world champion and sporting celebrity, director Juan Pablo
    Cadaveira offers a fascinating glimpse into today’s boxing landscape,
    revealing the politics of the sporting profession that often places
    entertainment value over the sport itself.
    In English and Spanish with subtitles
  • Slaying the Badger, directed and written by John Dower. (UK) – World Premiere.
    Before Lance Armstrong, there was Greg
    LeMond, who was the first and only American to officially win the Tour
    de France. In this engrossing documentary, LeMond looks back at the
    pivotal 1986 Tour, and his increasingly vicious
    rivalry with friend, teammate, and mentor Bernard Hinault. The reigning
    Tour champion and brutal competitor known as “The Badger,” Hinault
    ‘promised’ to help LeMond to his first victory in return for LeMond
    supporting him in the previous year. But in a sport
    that purports to reward teamwork, it’s really every man for himself.

Tribeca Talks: After the Movie and Conversations

  • Tribeca Talks: After the Movie

Champs,
directed by Bert Marcus. (USA) – World Premiere. This insightful and
provocative
documentary charts the lives of some of America’s heaviest
hitters—including Mike Tyson, Evander Holyfield, and Bernard Hopkins—as
they seek to break out of poverty via one of the few outlets available.
Bert Marcus skillfully weaves their personal histories
and gripping footage from their biggest bouts to explore the meaning of
the American dream in a society increasingly fragmented between rich
and poor.

After the movie: Stay for a conversation with former boxers Mike Tyson and Evander Holyfield, and
boxing promoter Lou DiBella, about life, rivalry, and conflict both inside and out of the ring.

  • Special Conversation

Shooting and Scoring

A
conversation about the particular art in creating authentic sports
stories – from non-fiction material to heart stopping hits that satisfy
hardcore fans while also connecting
with broader audiences. Featuring director Peter Berg, best known for
his hit TV series and film
Friday Night Lights and for the recent sports doc series State of Play which illuminates the intersection of sports and sports culture with wider society in 2014 America.

Tribeca Drive-In

Next Goal Wins” will screen as part of the Tribeca Drive-In series on April 19. 
The full Tribeca Drive-In schedule will be announced in the coming days.

  • Next Goal Wins, directed by Mike Brett and Steve Jamison. (UK) – World Premiere .
    When the American Samoan national soccer
    team suffered the world’s worst defeat, losing to Australia 31-0, these
    tiny islands crash-landed into last place in FIFA world rankings, and
    became known as “the worst team
    in the world.” More than a decade later, they have not yet won an
    official match.
    Next Goal Wins follows their miraculous efforts as they train for
    the next World Cup. Led by an eccentric new coach, they have a chance
    to redefine their international reputation.

Special Screening

  • The Battered Bastards of Baseball, directed and written by Chapman Way and Maclain Way. (USA)
    – New York Premiere. Bing Russell is best known for his role as Deputy Clem on
    Bonanza
    , but he left Hollywood in 1973 to pursue his first love:
    baseball. Creating the independent Portland Mavericks, his ragtag roster
    of players that major franchises rejected were baseball’s biggest joke.
    Then they shattered expectations and turned
    Major League Baseball on its heels in an unheralded story of spirit and
    rebellion.

30 for 30: Soccer Stories

Followed
by a special conversation with filmmakers Ezra Edelman, Daniel Battsek
and ESPN about the films and the upcoming World Cup

  • The Opposition,
    directed by Ezra Edelman and Jeffrey Plunkett (USA/Chile) – World
    Premiere.   In
    the wake of the 1973 military coup in Chile, American-backed dictator
    Augusto Pinochet transformed Santiago’s National Stadium into a
    concentration camp where political opponents were tortured and
    assassinated.  Only two months later, that same stadium was
    scheduled to host a decisive World Cup qualifier between Chile and the
    Soviet Union.  Despite protests, FIFA’s own investigation, and the
    Soviets’ eventual boycott, the Chilean team still played the game as
    planned, qualifying for the 1974 World Cup on a goal
    scored against no one.
  • Maradona ’86
    (TBC),
    directed by Sam Blair, Executive Produced by John Battsek (USA) – World
    Premiere. In the 1986 World Cup, Diego Armando Maradona redefined what
    is possible for one man to accomplish on the soccer
    field. Already a figure of notoriety, but with one failed World Cup
    behind him, Argentinian Maradona took possession of the international
    stage in Mexico, the spotlight rarely drifting from him as he wrote an
    indelible history with his feet and, of course,
    with a “hand from God.” Maradona ’86 is a fascinating,
    evocative, and operatic portrait, revealing Maradona’s inner complexity
    and contradictions while basking in the joy and passion of his
    performance on the pitch, as he wrote his name
    into soccer history forever.

Short Film

  • True Gladiators, directed by Kevin Donovan (USA) – World Premiere
    Follows the career of three former American Gladiators and how they
    deal with the demands of the show, the injuries, and their personal
    lives. 

All of
this year’s Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival films will screen at
Tribeca Cinemas on Saturday, April 26. The films will also screen prior
to April 26, throughout the festival. 

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