Jay Baruchel found success with his first venture into screenwriting, the hockey comedy Goon. The movie premiered Saturday at the Toronto International Film Festival, and is expected to come out of the fest with a distribution deal. The actor/writer is not one to rest on his laurels, and is already setting up his next project—another sports comedy—with writing partner Jesse Chabot. Variety reports Baruchel and Chabot will adapt the 2005 non-fiction book Baseballissimo by Dave Bidini. The book “charts the author’s family adventures in Nettuno, the baseball capital of Italy, where American G.I.s introduced the game in 1944.” Rush frontman and “baseball fanatic” Geddy Lee optioned the book last year, and will team with A71 president David Miller and Bidini to produce.
I love a good sports comedy, and given Matt and Steve’s reaction to Goon, Baruchel and Chabot are the right men for the job. Currently, the duo is also working on Random Acts of Violence and Exorcism Diaries. Read the synopsis for Baseballissimo after the jump.
In the spring of 2002, Dave Bidini set off for Nettuno, Italy, with his wife, Janet, and their two small children, in search of his favourite summer game, baseball. Nettuno was his destination because this town, south of Rome, has been the baseball capital of Italy since 1944, when the game was introduced by the American GIs who liberated the region. Bidini wanted to spend time in a town where everyone is as nuts about the game as he is, and in Nettuno, they love the game so much that they hand out baseball gloves and bats to children taking their first communion.
For six months Bidini followed the fortunes of the Serie B Peones, Nettunese to the core. At the same time he was also learning about his own heritage, having spent his youth vigorously ignoring his Italianness. The result of his summer in Italy is vintage Bidini: a funny, perceptive, and engrossing book that takes readers far beyond the professional sport to the game that people around the world love to play. [Amazon]