Race to screen Lance Armstrong movie hots up: Bradley Cooper signs up for biopic

Four movies in progress about disgraced Tour de France star

by John Stevenson   August 20, 2013  

Lance Armstrong @ Santos TDU 2010 (Photosport International)

Actor Bradley Cooper, nominated for an Oscar for his performance in Silver Linings Playbook, is in talks to appear in one of the three Lance Armstrong dramatic movies currently in development, according to Deadline.com.

The movie, which has the working title Red Blooded American, will be directed by Jay Roach (Austin Powers) and backed by studio Warner Brothers. Cooper, who looks set to come on board as a producer as well as appearing in the film, will play either Armstrong or Tyler Hamilton.

Hamilton, a former team-mate of Armstrong, confessed to doping and detailed what he’d seen of doping practices in Armstrong’s team in an interview with US current affairs TV show 60 Minutes, and later fleshed out his story in his book with Daniel Coyle, The Secret Race.

That interview was a crucial step in Armstrong’s downfall as the evidence against him became overwhelming.

He was subsequently stripped of his seven Tour de France titles and numerous other victories after the US Anti-Doping Agency found he had used and orchestrated a doping program at the US Postal and Discovery teams.

Warner Brothers has the rights to Hamilton’s life story so Red Blooded American may focus on the events covered in Hamilton’s book.

However, Cooper is a busy man, so it may be that the race to get a dramatic version of Lance Armstrong’s life to the screen will be won by one of the other two players on the board.

Director Steven Frears (The Queen, High Fidelity) is also working on a Lance Armstrong project, to star Ben Foster (3:10 to Yuma, X-Men: The Last Stand), who bears a resemblance to Armstrong. They will start production in the autumn, with a script by John Hodges, who wrote the screenplay for Trainspotting. It will cover Armstrong’s career from his fight with cancer to the drug scandal that led to his downfall.

Director JJ Abrams (Lost, Star Trek) is also working on an Armstrong movie based on the forthcoming book Cycle Of Lies: The Fall Of Lance Armstrong by New York Times sportswriter Juliet Macur.

At the head of the pack, though, is a documentary by Oscar-winner Alex Gibney (Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room, Taxi to the Dark Side). Called The Armstrong Lie, it will be released by Sony Pictures Classics later this year.

Gibney set out to chronicle Armstrong’s comeback in 2009 and was granted “unlimited and unprecedented access to Armstrong” according to producers Frank Marshall and Matt Tolmach. That access came in rather handy in 2012 when Armstrong admitted to doping.

12 user comments

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Blimey thats a lotta films...for what its worth Ben Foster definitely more of a cyclists build than Cooper...

posted by NeilXDavis [118 posts]
20th August 2013 - 10:34


Don't Hollywood usually get English actors to play baddies?

posted by Gashead [31 posts]
20th August 2013 - 10:45


Lance in my Pance.

Merlin Cycles women's race team ~ http://www.merlincycles.com
Manx nerd peddler ~ http://mooleur.blogspot.com

mooleur's picture

posted by mooleur [542 posts]
20th August 2013 - 10:52


Lance isn't the 'Villain' in this story, they will make him an anti-hero. I can see Ben Foster going all the way with the weight and sleezy character, Cooper is just too big in build and profile.

I am not surprised, Hollywood is always coming up with these double header movies. Oh and British actors now play all the good guys too.

I am stronger than Mensa, Miller and Mailer, I spat out Plath and Pinter.

bikeboy76's picture

posted by bikeboy76 [1753 posts]
20th August 2013 - 11:59


Whos going to play Robin Williams?

posted by fiftyacorn [91 posts]
20th August 2013 - 12:01


Lance who?

posted by mrchrispy [407 posts]
20th August 2013 - 12:47


I wonder if Lance gets a cut of the money? He will sure need it with all of the lawyer fees he's racking up.

posted by jarredscycling [457 posts]
20th August 2013 - 15:14


I want an Austin Powers version of Lance Armstrong, yeah baby! One swedish made EPO pump...

posted by TeamCC [146 posts]
20th August 2013 - 15:45


Fassbender would be a good choice - he got crazy skinny playing Bobby Sands in Hunger.

Actually, scratch that - Christian Bale would be perfect casting as a skinny crazy guy. I can see easily imagine him beating the living crap out of a French motorist.

Ghedebrav's picture

posted by Ghedebrav [1132 posts]
20th August 2013 - 22:04


personally I don't understand why dope and cycling go together, I think it would make me wobble around and I'd probably have to stop for munchies at every newsagents I passed

posted by willn [5 posts]
21st August 2013 - 11:15


okay - film title thread needed ?

Y tu Larry Tambien?
Flying down to EPO
Bad Blood (the sequel)
The Colour of Lies (re-make)


posted by Sudor [184 posts]
21st August 2013 - 12:05


directed by the Austin Powers director. Who will play Dr (Evil) Ferrari?

posted by ManyFacedTMan [41 posts]
21st August 2013 - 12:17