Moneyball (film)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia - View original article

Moneyball
Moneyball Poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byBennett Miller
Produced byMichael De Luca
Rachael Horovitz
Brad Pitt
Screenplay bySteven Zaillian
Aaron Sorkin
Story byStan Chervin
Based onMoneyball 
by Michael Lewis
StarringBrad Pitt
Jonah Hill
Philip Seymour Hoffman
Music byMychael Danna
CinematographyWally Pfister
Editing byChristopher Tellefsen
StudioScott Rudin Productions
Plan B Entertainment
Michael De Luca Productions
Distributed byColumbia Pictures
Release dates
  • September 23, 2011 (2011-09-23) (United States)
Running time133 minutes[1]
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$50 million[2]
Box office$110,206,216[3]
 
Jump to: navigation, search
Moneyball
Moneyball Poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byBennett Miller
Produced byMichael De Luca
Rachael Horovitz
Brad Pitt
Screenplay bySteven Zaillian
Aaron Sorkin
Story byStan Chervin
Based onMoneyball 
by Michael Lewis
StarringBrad Pitt
Jonah Hill
Philip Seymour Hoffman
Music byMychael Danna
CinematographyWally Pfister
Editing byChristopher Tellefsen
StudioScott Rudin Productions
Plan B Entertainment
Michael De Luca Productions
Distributed byColumbia Pictures
Release dates
  • September 23, 2011 (2011-09-23) (United States)
Running time133 minutes[1]
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$50 million[2]
Box office$110,206,216[3]

Moneyball is an American 2011 biographical sports drama film directed by Bennett Miller from a screenplay by Steven Zaillian and Aaron Sorkin. The film is based on Michael Lewis's 2003 nonfiction book of the same name, an account of the Oakland Athletics baseball team's 2002 season and their general manager Billy Beane's attempts to assemble a competitive team. In the film, Beane (Brad Pitt) and assistant GM Peter Brand (Jonah Hill), faced with the franchise's unfavorable financial situation, take a sophisticated sabermetric approach towards scouting and analyzing players, acquiring "submarine" pitcher Chad Bradford (Casey Bond) and former catcher Scott Hatteberg (Chris Pratt), and winning 20 consecutive games, an American League record.

Columbia Pictures bought the rights to Lewis's book in 2004.[4] After a number of years in development, the film was featured at the 2011 Toronto International Film Festival[5] and was released on September 23, 2011 to a box-office success and positive reviews. The film was nominated for six Academy Awards including Best Actor and Best Picture.

Plot[edit]

Oakland Athletics general manager Billy Beane (Brad Pitt) is upset by his team's loss to the New York Yankees in the 2001 postseason. With the impending departure of star players Johnny Damon, Jason Giambi, and Jason Isringhausen to free agency, Beane attempts to devise a strategy for assembling a competitive team for 2002 but struggles to overcome Oakland's limited payroll. During a visit to the Cleveland Indians, Beane meets Peter Brand (Jonah Hill), a young Yale economics graduate with radical ideas about how to assess players' value. Beane tests Brand's theory by asking whether he would have drafted him (out of high school), Beane having been a Major League player before becoming general manager. Though scouts considered Beane a phenomenal player, his career in the Major Leagues was disappointing. After some prodding, Brand admits that he would not have drafted him until the ninth round and that Beane should probably have accepted a scholarship to Stanford instead. Sensing opportunity, Beane hires Brand as the Athletics' assistant general manager.

The team's scouts are first dismissive of and then hostile towards Brand's non-traditional sabermetric approach to scouting players, most notably Grady Fuson (Ken Medlock) – who is fired by Beane after insulting their approach, and takes to the radio airwaves and doubts the team's future. Rather than relying on the scouts' experience and intuition, Brand selects players based almost exclusively on their on-base percentage (OBP). By finding players with a high OBP but with characteristics that lead scouts to dismiss them, Brand assembles a team of undervalued players with far more potential than the A's hamstrung finances would otherwise allow. Despite vehement objections from the scouts, Beane supports Brand's theory and hires the players he selected, such as unorthodox submarine pitcher Chad Bradford (Casey Bond). Following the free agent signings, Beane finds that he also faces opposition from Art Howe (Philip Seymour Hoffman), the Athletics' manager. With tensions already high between them because of a contract dispute, Howe disregards Beane and Brand's strategy and plays the team in a traditional style despite their unsuitability. Beane eventually trades away the lone traditional first baseman, Carlos Peña, to force Howe to use the new recruits.

Early in the season, the Athletics fare poorly, leading critics within and outside the team to dismiss the new method as a dismal failure. Beane convinces the owner to stay the course, and eventually the team's record begins to improve. The Athletics go on to win 19 consecutive games, tying for the longest winning streak in American League history. Beane's young daughter implores him to go to the A's final game against the Kansas City Royals, where Oakland is already leading 11–0 after the third inning and appears set to advance their winning streak to a record-breaking 20. Like many baseball players, Beane is superstitious and avoids attending or sometimes even following games as they are in progress, but upon hearing how well the game is going on the radio, he decides to go. Beane arrives in the fourth inning, only to watch the team go to pieces and eventually allow the Royals to even the score at 11. Finally, the A's do win, on a walk-off home run by one of Brand's picks, Scott Hatteberg. Then, despite all their success in the second half of the season, the A's lose in the first round of the postseason, this time to the Minnesota Twins. Beane is disappointed, but satisfied at having demonstrated the value of his and Brand's methods. Beane is later approached by the owner of the Boston Red Sox, who realizes that the sabermetric model is the future of baseball, and offers to hire Beane as the general manager of the Red Sox. Beane passes up the opportunity to become the general manager of the Boston Red Sox, despite an offer of a $12.5 million salary, which would have made him the highest-paid general manager in sports history. He returns to Oakland to continue running the Athletics. In 2004, two years after adopting the sabermetric model, the Boston Red Sox win their first World Series since 1918.


Cast[edit]

Cast notes

Production[edit]

Stan Chervin developed the initial drafts of the screenplay after Columbia Pictures bought rights to Lewis's book in 2004. Once Brad Pitt committed to the project in 2007, Chervin dropped out. Steve Zaillian was signed to write a second screenplay, and David Frankel was signed to direct.[10] Steven Soderbergh was subsequently signed to replace Frankel.[11] Demetri Martin was cast to portray the role of Paul DePodesta, Beane's top assistant. Former Athletics Scott Hatteberg and David Justice were slated to play themselves in the movie.[12] When asked how the film would dramatize and make entertaining a book about statistics, Soderbergh said:

I think we have a way in, making it visual and making it funny. I want it to be really funny and entertaining, and I want you to not realize how much information is being thrown at you because you're having fun. We've found a couple of ideas on how to bust the form a bit, in order for all that information to reach you in a way that's a little oblique.[13]

On June 19, 2009, days before filming was set to begin, Sony put the picture on hold.[11][14] Zaillian's and Soderbergh's plan for the film called for elements considered non-traditional for a sports movie, such as interviews with real-life players. Soderbergh was dismissed and ultimately replaced by Bennett Miller.[15] Aaron Sorkin wrote a third version of the screenplay.[11][15]

Miller hired Ken Medlock, a former minor league baseball player and actor who plays scout Grady Fuson, as a technical advisor. Medlock invited professional scout Artie Harris to lend Medlock credibility. Harris, himself a self-styled "old-fashioned scout", subsequently auditioned for and obtained a role in the film as a scout who typically disregards sabermetrics.[16] Baseball figures, including scout Phil Pote and baseball coaches and managers George Vranau and Barry Moss, were cast in supporting roles.[17]

With Martin no longer involved, Jonah Hill was cast to play DePodesta. However, feeling the character was becoming fictional, DePodesta requested his name not be used. Hill's role was transformed into a composite character, named Peter Brand.[18]

Filming began in July 2010.[19] Filming locations included Fenway Park, the Oakland-Alameda Coliseum, Dodger Stadium and Blair Field,[20] while studio shooting took place at Sony's Culver City studios. During principal photography scenes featuring Kathryn Morris as Beane's second wife were shot; none made it to the final cut.[21]

Accuracy[edit]

While mostly accurate, the film alters history at points. The film suggests that Carlos Peña was Oakland's starting first baseman from Opening Day until he was traded to the Detroit Tigers in early July. In fact, while Peña did start at first base during April and May, he lost that position to Scott Hatteberg on June 1, and was playing for Oakland's AAA team when he was traded.[22][23]

Early in the film, it is suggested that right-handed pitcher Chad Bradford (Bond) was picked up by Oakland at the urging of Peter Brand (Hill). Bradford stops Beane (Pitt) in the clubhouse on Opening Day to thank him for the opportunity, a moment that clearly indicates that Bradford is just starting his stint with the A's. In fact, Bradford pitched for Oakland the previous season after being traded to the A's from the Chicago White Sox on December 7, 2000.[24] Bradford, during the 2001 season, was mainly used as a late reliever and set-up man.[25] It is also mentioned that Jeremy Giambi was chosen to be one of the three players, along with Scott Hatteberg and David Justice, to replace his brother, Jason, Johnny Damon and Jason Isringhausen in the 2002 lineup, when in fact he was picked up in 2000 and was part of the famous "flip play" in the 2001 ALDS vs. the New York Yankees. Finally, former Oakland A's manager Art Howe (Hoffman) has spoken out publicly about his disapproval of how he was portrayed in the film.[26] The story shows Howe as a stubborn manager who, contrary to Beane's wishes, refused to use Bradford out of the bullpen or to start Hatteberg at first base. In fact, Bradford was used regularly out of the bullpen in early 2002, just as he had been in 2001, when he logged 75 innings primarily as a late reliever or set-up man for Billy Koch, the A's primary closer.[27][28] Scott Hatteberg has also stated publicly that Howe was portrayed inaccurately. He is quoted in an interview as saying, "Art Howe was a huge supporter of mine. I never got the impression from him that I was not his first choice." Later in the interview, Hatteberg mentions that "there was that turbulent relationship" between Howe and Beane. The movie also references that Hatteberg had been on the free agent market for a long time, when, in fact, he was picked up by the Athletics the day after he was released by the Red Sox.[29]

Reception[edit]

Critical reception[edit]

Moneyball has received significant critical acclaim. As of July 7, 2012, the aggregate review website Rotten Tomatoes registered positive responses in 215 of 228 sampled reviews for a score of 94% and certified the film "Fresh." The critical consensus of the site states that "Director Bennett Miller, along with Brad Pitt and Jonah Hill, take a niche subject and turn it into a sharp, funny, and touching portrait worthy of baseball lore".[30] In comparison, Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, gave the film an average score of 87 based on 42 reviews.[31]

The film has received a similarly positive response from audiences. A CinemaScore analysis found that people who had just seen the film gave it an average letter score of 'A'.[32]

Top ten lists[edit]

The film has appeared on the following critics' top ten lists for the best films of 2011:

CriticPublicationRank
Rene RodriguezMiami Herald1st[33]
Lisa KennedyDenver Post1st[33]
Michael PhillipsChicago Tribune2nd[33]
Satya Nagendra PadalaInternational Business Times2nd[34]
Ann HornadayThe Washington Post3rd[35]
Elizabeth WeitzmanNew York Daily News3rd[33]
Peter TraversRolling Stone4th[36]
David FearTime Out New York4th[33]
N/ATV Guide6th[33]
Joe NeumaierNew York Daily News6th[33]
Marshall FineHollywood & Fine6th[33]
Betsy SharkeyLos Angeles Times7th[33]
Robbie CollinThe Telegraph8th[33]
Lisa SchwarzbaumEntertainment Weekly8th[33]
Dave McCoyMSN Movies8th[33]
Kim LorganMSN Movies8th[33]
Richard T. JamesonMSN Movies10th[33]
Stephen HoldenThe New York Times10th[33]
Karina LongworthThe Village Voice10th[33]

Accolades[edit]

List of awards and nominations
AwardCategoryRecipients and nomineesResult
84th Academy Awards[37][38]Best PictureMichael De Luca, Rachael Horovitz, and Brad PittNominated
Best ActorBrad PittNominated
Best Supporting ActorJonah HillNominated
Best Adapted ScreenplaySteven Zaillian and Aaron Sorkin (Screenplay), Stan Chervin (Story)Nominated
Best Film EditingChristopher TellefsenNominated
Best Sound MixingDeb Adair, Ron Bochar, Dave Giammarco, and Ed NovickNominated
American Film InstituteMovies of the YearMichael De Luca, Rachael Horovitz, and Brad PittShortlisted
Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts Awards[39]Best Film – InternationalMichael De Luca, Rachael Horovitz, and Brad PittNominated
Best Screenplay – InternationalSteven Zaillian, Aaron Sorkin, and Stan ChervinNominated
Best Actor – InternationalBrad PittNominated
BAFTA Award[40][41]Best ActorBrad PittNominated
Best Supporting ActorJonah HillNominated
Best Adapted ScreenplaySteven Zaillian, Aaron Sorkin, and Stan ChervinNominated
BMI Film & TV Awards[42]Film Music AwardMychael DannaWon
Boston Society of Film Critics AwardsBest ActorBrad PittWon
Best ScreenplaySteven Zaillian, Aaron Sorkin, and Stan ChervinWon
Broadcast Film Critics Association AwardsBest PictureNominated
Best ActorBrad PittNominated
Best ScreenplaySteven Zaillian, Aaron Sorkin, and Stan ChervinWon
Casting Society of America[43]Outstanding Achievement in Casting for a Big Budget Drama FeatureFrancine Maisler, Lauren GreyNominated
Central Ohio Film Critics Association Awards[44]Best FilmNominated
Best Adapted ScreenplaySteve Zaillian, Aaron Sorkin, and Stan ChervinNominated
Actor of the YearBrad Pitt (Also for The Tree of Life and Happy Feet Two)Nominated
Denver Film Critics Society[45]Best ActorBrad PittWon
Best ScreenplaySteve Zaillian, Aaron Sorkin, and Stan ChervinNominated
Golden Globe AwardsBest Motion Picture – DramaNominated
Best Actor – Motion Picture DramaBrad PittNominated
Best Supporting Actor – Motion PictureJonah HillNominated
Best ScreenplaySteve Zaillian, Aaron Sorkin, and Stan ChervinNominated
New York Film Critics CircleBest ActorBrad Pitt (Also for The Tree of Life)Won
Best ScreenplaySteve Zaillian, Aaron Sorkin, and Stan ChervinWon
Online Film Critics Society[46]Best Adapted ScreenplaySteve Zaillian, Aaron Sorkin, and Stan ChervinNominated
People's Choice Awards[47]Favorite Drama MovieNominated
Phoenix Film Critics Society[48][49]Best PictureNominated
Best Actor in a Supporting RoleJonah HillNominated
Best Original ScoreNominated
Producers Guild of America Award[50]Outstanding Producer of Theatrical Motion PicturesMichael De Luca, Rachael Horovitz, and Brad PittNominated
Satellite AwardsBest Motion PictureNominated
Best Actor – Motion Picture DramaBrad PittNominated
Best Supporting Actor – Motion PictureJonah HillNominated
Best Adapted ScreenplaySteve Zaillian, Aaron Sorkin, and Stan ChervinNominated
Screen Actors Guild AwardsOutstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading RoleBrad PittNominated
Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting RoleJonah HillNominated
Vancouver Film Critics Circle[51]Best ScreenplaySteve Zaillian, Aaron Sorkin, and Stan ChervinNominated

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Moneyball (12A)". British Board of Film Classification. 2011-09-05. Retrieved 2011-09-09. 
  2. ^ Kaufman, Amy (September 22, 2011). "Movie Projector: Brad Pitt vs. 'Lion King,' 'Dolphin Tale' for No.1". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved September 22, 2011. 
  3. ^ "Moneyball (2011)". Box Office Mojo. Amazon.com. Retrieved 2012-02-22.
  4. ^ Shea, John (October 18, 2008). "Beane a sex symbol in 'Moneyball' movie?". SFGate.com. Retrieved October 3, 2011. 
  5. ^ "TIFF 2011: U2, Brad Pitt, George Clooney Films Featured At 2011 Toronto International Film Festival". The Huffington Post. 26 July 2006. Retrieved August 25, 2011. 
  6. ^ Costa, Brian (2011-09-16). "The Man Not Named in 'Moneyball' - WSJ.com". Online.WSJ.com. Retrieved 2011-11-26. 
  7. ^ "Bill Plaschke: Paul DePodesta is captured to a tee in film 'Moneyball' - Los Angeles Times". Articles.LATimes.com. 2011-09-20. Retrieved 2011-11-26. 
  8. ^ Good, Owen (2011-08-06). "Hooray! Now We Know Why Bobby Kotick is in that Brad Pitt Movie". Kotaku. 
  9. ^ Template:Http://www.slashfilm.com/demetri-martin-cast-in-steven-soderberghs-moneyball/
  10. ^ Siegel, Tatiana (2008-10-16). "Columbia pitches Moneyball to Pitt". Variety. Retrieved 2011-07-02.
  11. ^ a b c Ditzian, Eric (September 23, 2011). "'Moneyball' Cheat Sheet: Everything You Need To Know". MTV Movie News. Retrieved October 26, 2011. 
  12. ^ Stiglich, Joe. "A's notebook: Lights, camera, action ... for Moneyball," InsideBayArea.com (May 26, 2009).
  13. ^ "Steven Soderbergh: The Girlfriend Experience". SuicideGirls.com. 21 May 2009. Retrieved 2009-05-21. 
  14. ^ (June 21, 2009). "Production On Moneyball Film Halted". LATimes.com. Retrieved 2011-07-02.
  15. ^ a b (April 12, 2010). "Finally, It's Batter Up For 'Moneyball'". Deadline.com. Retrieved 2011-07-02.
  16. ^ "Dodgers scout has bit role in Moneyball". Dodgers.MLB.com. Retrieved 2013-01-23. 
  17. ^ http://www.wpbf.com/entertainment/29275448/detail.html#ixzz1mVShQ8lJ[dead link]
  18. ^ Barshad, Amos (August 5, 2010). "If It’s Cool With Everyone, Paul DePodesta Would Really Rather Jonah Hill Not Use His Name in Moneyball". NYMag.com. Retrieved 2013-01-23. 
  19. ^ (July 30, 2010). "'Moneyball' shoot brings back memories". SFGate.com. Retrieved 2011-07-02.
  20. ^ Ugland, Devin (October 3, 2011). "Brad Pitt’s ‘Moneyball’ shot at Blair Field". Daily 49er. Retrieved October 4, 2011. 
  21. ^ Sneider, Jeff (May 30, 2012). "Kathryn Morris gets 'Discarded'". Variety. Retrieved 2013-01-23. "Morris...played Brad Pitt's second wife in Sony's Moneyball, though her scenes were cut from the film." 
  22. ^ "Scott Hatteberg (2002 Batting Gamelog)". Baseball-Reference.com. n.d. Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  23. ^ "Carlos Peña (Minors Batting)". Baseball-Reference.com. n.d. Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  24. ^ "Chad Bradford (Transactions)". Baseball-Reference.com. n.d. Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  25. ^ "Chad Bradford (2001 Pitching Gamelog)". Baseball-Reference.com. n.d. Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  26. ^ "Howe upset with 'Moneyball' portrayal". Fox Sports. 2011-09-27. Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  27. ^ "Chad Bradford (2002 Pitching Gamelog)". Baseball-Reference.com. n.d. Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  28. ^ "2002 Oakland A's". Baseball-Reference.com. n.d. Retrieved 2012-11-16. 
  29. ^ "Real Life 'Moneyball' Major Leaguer Scott Hatteberg on the Facts and Fiction of the New Film". moviefone.com. 2011-09-21. Retrieved 2012-11-18. 
  30. ^ "Moneyball". Rotten Tomatoes. Flixter. Retrieved July 7, 2012. 
  31. ^ "Moneyball". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved July 7, 2012. 
  32. ^ Kaufman, Amy (September 26, 2011). "'Moneyball' is a hit, but 'Lion' is box-office king". LATimes.com. Retrieved October 26, 2011.
  33. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p Dietz, Jason (December 8, 2011). "2011 Film Critic Top Ten Lists [Updated Dec. 22]". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved December 24, 2011. 
  34. ^ Satya Nagendra Padala (November 25, 2011). "Top 10 Best Movies of 2011". International Business Times. Retrieved December 25, 2011. 
  35. ^ Hornaday, Ann (December 10, 2011). "Ann Hornaday’s best films of 2011". The Washington Post. The Washington Post Company. Retrieved December 17, 2011. 
  36. ^ Travers, Peter (December 8, 2011). "10 Best Movies of 2011: Moneyball". Rolling Stone. Retrieved December 17, 2011. 
  37. ^ "Oscar 2012 winners – The full list". The Guardian. UK. 27 February 2012. Retrieved 29 February 2012. 
  38. ^ "Nominees and Winners for the 84th Academy Awards". Academy Awards of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (Oscars). Retrieved 21 February 2012. 
  39. ^ "AACTA Awards winners and nominees". Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts (AACTA). 31 January 2012. Retrieved 4 February 2012. 
  40. ^ "Orange BAFTA Film Awards 2012 winners list - in full". Digital Bits. Retrieved 20 February 2012. 
  41. ^ "BAFTA 2012 the winners - the full list". The Guardian. 12 February 2012. Retrieved 20 February 2012. 
  42. ^ Gallo, Phil (May 17, 2012). "Backbeat: Rolfe Kent Receives Career Achievement Honor at BMI Film and TV Awards". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved December 9, 2012. 
  43. ^ "Casting Society of America Announces Artios Awards Nominees". The Hollywood Reporter. August 20, 2012. Retrieved December 9, 2012. 
  44. ^ Tapley, Kristopher (January 2, 2012). "'Tree of Life' leads the way with Central Ohio critics nominations". HitFix. Retrieved December 9, 2012. 
  45. ^ "Denver Film Critics Society Announces 2012 Award Winners". Yahoo! Movies. January 11, 2012. Retrieved January 11, 2012. 
  46. ^ Tapley, Kristopher (December 26, 2011). "'Tree of Life' leads with 7 nods from Online Film Critics Society". HitFix. 
  47. ^ "Nominations Announced for the 'People's Choice Awards 2012'". TVbytheNumbers.Zap2it.com. 2011-11-08. Retrieved 2011-11-26. 
  48. ^ "Phoenix Film Critics Society 2011 Award Nominations". Phoenix Film Critics Society. Retrieved January 6, 2011. 
  49. ^ "Phoenix Film Critics Society 2011 Awards". Phoenix Film Critics Society. Retrieved January 6, 2012. 
  50. ^ "PGA ANNOUNCES THEATRICAL MOTION PICTURE AND LONG-FORM TELEVISION NOMINATIONS FOR 2012 PGA AWARDS". producersGuild.org. January 3, 2011. Retrieved January 5, 2011. 
  51. ^ Monk, Katherine (January 3, 2012). "Vancouver Film Critics Circle nominations: The Artist leads with four nods". The Vancouver Sun. Retrieved January 6, 2012. 

External links[edit]