Hard to remember now, but Ben Affleck and Matt Damon first appeared on the scene as Oscar-caliber scriptwriters who had a knack for compelling characterization and dramatic plots. They recently tried their hand at it again with The Last Duel, and now they’ve got another project lined up.
They’re telling the story of Nike’s relentless pursuit of Michael Jordan in the 1980s. Affleck and Damon will co-write and co-star (Affleck is directing too) in the story of Nike co-founder Phil Knight and marketing exec Sonny Vaccaro, who believed that Jordan could be convinced to partner with their shoe brand despite the NBA legend’s seeming disinterest. It was the ultimate long shot that, now, is well known as one of the most seismic marketing ploys of all time.
Affleck will play Knight and Damon will play Vaccaro. Word is nobody will play Jordan at all, with the movie’s focus instead zeroing in on his huge team that included his powerful and business savvy mother. Both Affleck and Damon are taking a pass on the script, which was written by Alex Convery and landed on Hollywood’s 2021 Blacklist — an annual ranking of the best unproduced scripts up for grabs in the film industry.
Of some interest, Deadline notes that Affleck and Damon are still listed as producers on an upcoming Apostle Paul movie, set to star Hugh Jackman. That movie was first announced in 2015 and hasn’t moved forward since, as far as we’ve heard. But if Deadline is still writing about it, that would imply that it’s still on the stove somewhere. Stay tuned.